Christ alone can give divine power to us; Angels: Day 308

Often the Fathers use the angels as examples of  great but limited power, contrasting the abilities of superior but still created beings with the omnipotence of God. Here St. Cyril of Alexandria argues that Christ is fully God because He can do what no angelic being can do: grant us power over demons and sickness.“The fruit of good deeds is honorable”—that’s a true saying. If you wish to lead a life as pure and undefiled as it’s possible for a human being to lead, then Christ will adorn you w … [Read more...]

An ancient prayer for modern times

When a book arrived in my mailbox about the Angelus prayer, I had to agree with my wife Laura when she said, “Really an entire book on the Angelus?” Little did I realize how quickly I would take those words back. Indeed, the Angelus prayer is short but it’s richness is hidden behind its simplicity. Jared Dees gives the Angelus prayer the attention it deserves in his book Praying the Angelus: Find Joy, Peace, and Purpose in Everyday Life.“Praying the Angelus has become for me a richly transfo … [Read more...]

Hear the music of the endless holiday in Heaven; Angels: Day 307

We hire a band for a wedding or a birthday, St. Augustine says, and everyone who hears it knows that something special is going on. But if  we listen and don’t let the world distract us, we can hear the music of  the angels singing at that endless festival in Heaven.Here, where we have festivals just for the fun of it, we put bands or sing- ers in front of our houses, or any kind of music that tempts us to indulgence. And what do passers-by say when they hear them? “What’s going on here?” And … [Read more...]

Brought near the holy angels; Angels: Day 306

With the Incarnation, says St. Cyril of Alexandria, the Church below is made one with the Church above. Christ has opened Heaven for us, and we have been brought near the angels.And the Evangelist says that the Heavens were opened, as if they had been closed a long time. For Christ said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you will see Heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man” ( John 1:51).Since the flock above and that below have now been made one, and o … [Read more...]

Flying Home; Angels: Day 305

St. Augustine says that our real home is the Zion in Heaven, which is the bliss of  the angels. Though  we live here on earth for the present, we can go back home, if we wish, on wings of love.Zion was a particular city. It fell, and among its ruins certain saints lived according to the flesh. But the true Zion, the true Jerusalem (Zion is the same as Jerusalem), is “eternal in the Heavens” (2 Cor. 5:1). She is our mother. She is the one who has given birth to us. She is the Church of the sai … [Read more...]

The incorruptible riches of the angels; Angels: Day 304

The two greatest commandments, as Jesus taught us, sum up the whole of the Scriptures: love God and love your neighbor. True believers who remember those commandments,  says  St. Augustine, are promised the incorruptible riches of the angels.All is contained in these brief sentences: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind,” and “love your neighbor as yourself.”In this love, all our holy fathers, patriarchs, prophets, and apost … [Read more...]