"...awaken and sharpen your realization of the invisible world about you,... foster a certain familiar acquaintance with the Angels, who are so constant in their solicitude for your salvation and holiness." Pope Pius XII

St. Gabriel Building Project


Commonly Asked Questions
on the Angels

The short answer to this most asked of all questions about the angels is simply "no." For the Congregation for the Divine Worship and the Sacraments of the Vatican stated in the document The Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy of 2001, that "the practice of assigning names to the holy angels should be discouraged, except in the cases of St. Gabriel, St. Raphael, and St. Michael, whose names are contained in Holy Scripture" (217).

We do well to reflect, then, that the term "Holy Guardian Angel" expresses very deeply our bond to the angel assigned to us by God for life. For just as there is only one woman and one man in this whole world who can respond to us when we say, "Mom" or "Dad", so too in all the choirs of angels, there is only one angel who can respond to us when we cry out, "Holy Guardian Angel, help me!"

That every baptized person has a Guardian Angel is clear from what St. Basil taught and the new Catechism of the Catholic Church reiterated, "Every one of the faithful has an angel standing at his side as educator and guide, directing his life" (cf. CCC 336). This passage does not state specifically that every human being, without exception, has a Guardian Angel. Nevertheless, in another passage, the Catechism stresses in no uncertain terms that "From its beginning until death, human life is surrounded by their [that is, the angels'] watchful care and intercession" (CCC 336).

In accord with this, the general teaching of theologians holds that not only every baptized person, but every human being has their own personal Guardian Angel which also teaches the recently published YOUCAT (Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church), approved by the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith in 2010, "Every person receives from God a Guardian Angel" (n. 55). This view is biblically based and founded on the words of Our Lord in the Gospels, where He states emphatically to His disciples, "See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I say to you that their angels in heaven always see the face of My Father Who is in heaven" (Mt 18:10). Moreover, St. Thomas Aquinas teaches that the protection of the angels is a gift not only of grace, but also a gift to mankind in the order of nature. Finally, since each individual, based on their own free will, has a unique destiny, it is fitting that there be a one-on-one relationship with an angel. This same position was also taught by St. Gregory the Wonder Worker and St. Jerome, who held that every person has from birth their own special Guardian Angel.

St. Thomas Aquinas maintains that everyone receives a Guardian Angel at birth. Moreover, he states that the Guardian Angel of the mother guards her child while it is still in the womb. Other Fathers and Doctors of the Church, however, for example, St. Jerome and St. Basil the Great, believe that our Guardian Angel is assigned at baptism. St. Anselm, on the other hand, goes a step farther by stating that "every soul is committed to an angel when it is united with a body." In other words, he believes, along with some other saints and theologians, that everyone receives a Guardian Angel at conception. To sum up, then, there are three opinions about when our Guardian Angel may be assigned to us, namely, 1.) at conception, 2.) at birth, or 3.) or at baptism.

The fact, that every human person has a Guardian Angel excludes implicitly that we receive the Guardian Angel at baptism. It remains, then, a question open to speculation whether a human being receives the Guardian Angel at conception or birth. But since a person's life begins at the moment of conception, there is no reason for the angel to have to wait until the person is born. Considering the importance of prenatal care, it is reasonable to believe that the Guardian Angel would be want to be involved. It may also be true, that all benefit from the angelic assistance from the beginning of life according to the natural providence of God, and that in baptism a deeper supernatural bond with the holy angels arises.

Guardian Angel Stories

In the early 1990’s my husband and I and our 7 children moved into a rental home quite far from where we had lived before. One day 4 of the children and myself were returning from an outing in our family station wagon.

We were traveling over the 2 large hills back home. As we were streaming down the second hill I stopped at the bottom to make the necessary left turn towards home. Very quickly my Guardian Angel said “Look in your rearview mirror.” I immediately looked in the mirror and saw a truck barreling down the hill.

If you have an inspiring Angel story, you would be willing to share, please send it to contact@opusangelorum.org.

“Out of sight is out of mind” goes the saying. How often this is true with respect to our relationship with our Guardian Angel; we forget him because we do not see him. Guardian Angel stories serve as a tonic helping us cultivate a personal relationship with our Guardian Angel and bolster our confidence in him. Such stories do illustrate well how the Angels take interest in our personal lives and not infrequently do intervene tangibly in behalf of their wards.

In 1982 my husband was offered a job in southern Idaho. For work related reasons he went ahead of me, by a couple of weeks. He took our 11 year old son with him. I was left alone with our 10 and 7 year old sons and our newborn baby daughter, whom I was nursing at that time. I had chosen to nurse ‘only’, with no other type of supplemental feeding. I was attending a support group, and my feedings were very successful, so I didn’t feel the need of any substitutes, since my mother’s milk was fully sufficient for her at that young of an age. Since she was still an infant, I fed her regularly during the night as well.

Once, during my husband’s absence, I woke from a very intense nightmare in the middle of the night. I was one of those people afraid of being left alone at night time. So, it took all the grace God could give me to strengthen me through the time that my husband and I were apart. This particular night I was going to need even more grace since I was in no condition to nurse our sweet baby, because I was still under the influence of the frightening dream. So, I began to earnestly implore God to help me and protect me so that I would be able to nurse our precious daughter. The baby began waking up and I knew I couldn’t wait for the intensity of the effects of the dream to wear off. Trusting God for what I needed in order to care for her, I lifted her from the bassinet beside our bed and held her in my arms. As I sat propped up in bed and drew her closer to me, I was amazed to see (not literally physically, but with what I call “my spiritual eyes”) a large Angel wing coming from the right, as if the Angel was positioned behind me and wrapping us up with its protective wings. Then another wing proceeded to do the same thing as it came from my left side. Both our precious baby and I were enveloped in God’s amazing protection by his Holy Angel, given to us as an answer to my outcry for help. I felt peace and was then able to successfully nurse our baby with confidence and calm. ~Judy R.

I grew up praying to my Guardian Angel every night and I never “outgrew” this important practice. For my own family, I faithfully beseech my children’s and my husband’s Guardian Angels every day by praying the Guardian Angel prayer one time for each of them, “Angel of God, [family member’s name] guardian dear…”, inserting the family member’s name where it fits. A recent family experience confirmed for me the importance of this practice.

My son celebrated a major college milestone by going skydiving for the first time with some friends. Despite the company having 20 years of safely helping people experience this sport, my motherly concerns were in high gear. We spoke to him while on the way to Mass – and just before he boarded the plane – and everyone prayed to his Guardian Angel at Mass for his safety. Independently of this, his brother was also praying at Mass almost 300 miles from our location. The priest gave an excellent homily about us not having any idea when God will call us home…and yes, our son called us after Mass and began with, “Mom, I’m calling before you see this on the news.”

All of his friends made their jump, with my son being the last one to leave the plane (in fact, he was the last jump of the day). He came safely to earth and then turned to see the plane suddenly point straight downward and nose dive straight into the earth. The young pilot tragically died on impact and we grieve for him and his family. An investigation determined that the engine failed right after my son jumped from the plane. At that point, the pilot lost control and crashed.

We believe God and our son’s Guardian Angel intervened in saving our son and his friends. Interestingly enough, our other son was in a motorcycle accident one week prior to this event and walked away with only minor injuries. I asked both of my sons to please let their guardian angels have some rest! ~Donna J.

In the Efficacy of the Holy Spirit:
“Put on the full armor of God” In the letters of St. Paul, we are admonished to prepare ourselves in this life for spiritual combat. As in those times, so also now we need to learn to fight for our own salvation and for others, not against men, but against the “principalities...powers...the evil spirits in the heavens” (Eph 6:12).

The Message of Fatima and the Priesthood
(Crusade for Priests) One hundred years ago, Our Lady spoke to three shepherd children at Fatima, “Pray, pray very much, and make sacrifices for sinners; for many souls go to hell, because there are none to pray and sacrifice for them.”

“Lazarus was carried away by angels.” (Lk 16:22)
Following the references on the angels in St. Luke’s Gospel we may add a word with St. Hildegard of Bingen, on the elder son of the Parable of the Merciful Father and prodigal son (Lk 15:11-32).

We are sincerely grateful

for all donations made toward our apostolate. Make checks payable to Opus Angelorum.
Check donations for the St. Gabriel Monastery and Mass Stipends should continue to be payable to the Order of the Holy Cross.
A weekly Holy Mass is offered in honor of St. Joseph for the intentions of our benefactors.
Opus Sanctorum Angelorum
164 Apollo Rd. SE • Carrollton, OH 44615
P: (330) 969-9900
contact@opusangelorum.org

Rector: Father Ludwig M. Oppl, ORC

Opus Angelorum

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