Homily for the Memorial of the Guardian Angels
Our faith teaches us that there is a spiritual realm that surrounds each of us, a reality where the forces of Good and Evil are constantly battling to win over souls. It is the angels who fight to lead souls closer to God and demons who struggle to pull souls away from Him. Even if we are unable to see this spiritual realm, it is an absolute reality that we need to pay attention to, especially right now because it’s obvious to me that we are engaged in an incredible spiritual battle at the moment. As I have been hearing more confessions, I am more convinced of that reality than ever before. While that is something we should be aware of, it is not something that is new and it’s not something that should frighten us. Why should we not be afraid? Because we have a spiritual being who accompanies us every step of the way. We have a guardian angel who is constantly by our side.
St. Basil the Great once said: “Beside each believer stands an Angel as protector and shepherd, leading him to life.”1 What St. Basil was talking about is echoed in our first reading today from the Book of Exodus. He was highlighting this promise that God has made to all believers since the beginning of time, that each of us has an angel who goes before us, who guards us along the journey of life, and who makes sure that we reach our destination safely. But in order to make that happen, we have to cooperate with our angels. We have to listen to them, we have to have a relationship with them.
When is the last time you spoke to your guardian angel? If I’m being honest, it’s been awhile. Many of us were taught that Guardian Angel prayer as children. Do we say that prayer at the beginning and end of every day? If not, let’s start that again. Talk to them. Share with them what you’re struggling with. Open up your hearts to them. (Side note: Do not give your guardian angel a name, though. They already have a name and to call them by something else would be disrespectful to their identity.)
Our guardian angels are those spiritual beings who have been assigned to us to help us attain the ultimate reward at the end of our lives: Heaven. They will be our protector and our shield against the enticements of the Devil. And that is a promise that we can take to the bank!
I want to leave us with a quote from St. John Bosco, which should be an encouragement to all of us to continue building this relationship with our guardian angels. St. John Bosco says this: “When tempted, invoke your Angel. He is more eager to help you than you are to be helped! Ignore the devil and do not be afraid of him: He trembles and flees at the sight of your Guardian Angel.”1 May that faith always guide us and keep us close to our guardian angels.
Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God’s love commits me here, ever this day, be at my side, to light and guard, to rule, to guide. Amen.