Tuesday, September 29, 2015
On September 29 the Catholic Church will celebrate the feast day of three archangels Saints Michael, Gabriel and Raphael. Each of these saints have been shown in sacred scripture to have played significant roles in helping and protecting God's chosen people. St. Michael alone has the honor of being called “defender of the Church of Jesus Christ.”
For centuries the Catholic Church has built and dedicated many churches to this powerful archangel, invoking his special protection and help to defend the truths of God which are revealed through the person of Jesus Christ and his Church. All the faithful in union with St. Michael should boldly acclaim Qui ut Deus meaning “Who is like unto God?” In this simple yet powerful phrase, St. Michael rebukes the rebellious angels in heaven and at the same time challenges us to rebuke our own rebellious nature if we wish to be true servants of the Lord.
One of the oldest devotions to St. Michael was given to the devout Servant of God Antonia d' Astonac by the archangel himself. In recorded volumes of her life, Antonia d' Astonac recorded her encounter with the archangel and was given the prayers for his chaplet along with promises for those who would devoutly practice devotion to him. The chaplet consists of nine salutation prayers in honor of the nine choirs of angels followed with one Our Father and three Hail Mary's. The chaplet is not just honoring St. Michael and the nine choirs, it is a request for increase in the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit. This in turn will help us overcome sin and temptation, increasing one's fidelity and love of God.
Through St. Michael and the choir of Seraphim, we ask God for an increase in the Fear of the Lord which will help produce the fruits or virtues of temperance and hope. An increase of the the gift of Fear which will bring us to a greater love of God and neighbor: doing only what is pleasing to God. Devotion to St. Michael is a pledge to God that we will fight our flesh, the world and Satan for His sake.
As we grow in virtue we will also grow in knowledge of the truth about ourselves, truth about God and about the truths that He reveals to us through His church. Let us continuously pray to St. Michael that he will help us defend the revealed truth of God, as people continue to compromise their own faith and reject the almighty Lord and His authority. Let us cry Qui ut Deus! Who is like unto God!