Tag: Facts

Guardian Angels: 11 Amazing Facts Every Mortal Should Know 

Guardian Angels: 11 Amazing Facts Every Mortal Should Know 

Belief in guardian angels can be traced throughout all antiquity

We owe much to our Guardian Angels, who most of the time guard and protect us without our knowledge

“See that you despise not 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” (Matthew 18:10).

October 2 is observed in the Catholic Church as the feast of the Holy Guardian Angels. In 1670, Pope Clement X established this day in the universal calendar as a day to honor the angels who protect us each day.

While most of the attention this day is given to personal Guardian Angels, it is a tradition in the Church (taught by theologians such as Saint Thomas Aquinas) that all countries, cities, dioceses, and parishes have their own Guardian Angel.

They are fascinating creatures of God, shrouded with great mystery. On occasion newspapers will report on miracles when someone is saved from an accident by a mysterious figure, often never seen again.

We owe much to our Guardian Angels, who most of the time guard and protect us without our knowledge. They intervene quietly, fulfilling their task as humbly as possible.

To help us appreciate these “heavenly helpers,” here are 5 amazing facts about our Guardian Angels:


1) Who is a Guardian angel?

A guardian angel is a pure spirit (a created, non-human, non-corporeal being) that has been assigned to guard a particular person, especially with respect to helping that person avoid spiritual dangers and achieve salvation.

The angel may also help the person avoid physical dangers, particularly if this will help the person achieve salvation.

Note that ‘Angel’ is the name of their office. They are actually pure spirits! 


2) Who has a Guardian Angel?

Every person in the world has a Guardian Angel (whether Christian or not). It is believed by theologians and is confirmed in the YOUCAT that “Every person receives from God a Guardian Angel” (n. 55).

This is consistent with Sacred Scripture, the teachings of Saints Thomas Aquinas, Basil and Jerome as well as experiences from non-Christians who believe they were helped by a Guardian Angel.

Mike Aquilina writes about such an experience from a friend he knew in his book Angels of God:

“A friend of mine, a noted Harvard-trained philosopher, was an unbeliever as a young man. One day he was swimming in the ocean, and the undertow swept him away. He knew he was drowning, with no hope of rescue, when suddenly a strong arm grabbed him and towed him to shore. His rescuer was a big muscle-bound guy. When my sputtering friend tried to thank him, the guy laughed at him—and then vanished. This marked a milestone on my friend’s road to conversion.”

Although it is certain that the faithful have guardian angels, it is commonly thought that they are even more widely available. Ludwig Ott explains:

According to the general teaching of the theologians, however, not only every baptized person, but every human being, including unbelievers, has his own special guardian angel from his birth [Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, 120].

This understanding is reflected in an Angelus address by Benedict XVI, who stated:

Dear friends, the Lord is ever close and active in humanity’s history and accompanies us with the unique presence of his Angels, whom today the Church venerates as “Guardian Angels”, that is, ministers of the divine care for every human being. From the beginning until the hour of death, human life is surrounded by their constant protection [Angelus, Oct. 2, 2011]. 


3) Where do we read about Guardian Angels in Scripture?

We see angels helping people on various occasions in Scripture, but there are certain instances in which we see angels providing a protective function over a period of time.

In Tobit, Raphael is assigned to an extended mission to help Tobit’s son (and his family in general).

In Daniel, Michael is described as “the great prince who has charge of your [Daniel’s] people” (Dan. 12:1). He is thus depicted as the guardian angel of Israel.

In the Gospels, Jesus indicates that there are guardian angels for individuals, including little children. He says:

See that you do not despise one of these little ones; for I tell you that in heaven their angels always behold the face of my Father who is in heaven (Matt. 18:10).

4) What does Jesus mean when he says these angels “always behold” the face of the Father?

It may mean that they are constantly standing in his presence in heaven and able to communicate the needs of their charges to him.

Alternately, based on the idea that angels are messengers (Greek, angelos = “messenger”) in the heavenly court, it may mean that whenever these angels seek access to the heavenly court, they are always granted it and allowed to present the needs of their charges to God.


5) What does the Church teach about Guardian Angels?

Guardian Angels are appointed at the beginning of life. As the Catechism explains, “From its beginning until death, human life is surrounded by their watchful care and intercession” (CCC 336). This statement leads some to believe (Saint Anselm for example) that angels are appointed at the very moment of the union of body and soul in the womb. If true (it is not dogmatically declared and is therefore up for debate), it would follow that women who are pregnant have two Guardian Angels watching over them and their child.


6) Guardian Angels have names, but God gives those names to them.

The Catholic Church has instructed us that:

“The practice of assigning names to the Holy Angels should be discouraged, except in the cases of Gabriel, Raphael and Michael whose names are contained in Holy Scripture.” (Congregation of Divine Worship and the Sacraments, The Directory of Popular Piety, n. 217, 2001).

The reasoning behind this is that a name contains a certain amount of authority over another person. If I know your name I can call you whenever I want and can feel a certain amount of authority over you. We do not have authority over our Guardian Angels. They only report to one commander: God Himself. We can ask for their assistance or help, but we should not feel like they are at our beck and call.

The Church then discourages us from naming our Guardian Angels as we may receive a name in prayer, but it may not be divinely inspired. It could be influenced by the devil or by our own human thoughts. We have only three names of angels confirmed in Scripture and so any other name we receive is difficult to confirm as inspired by God.


7) Are there dangers to watch out for in venerating angels?

The Congregation stated:

Popular devotion to the Holy Angels, which is legitimate and good, can, however, also give rise to possible deviations:

  • When, as sometimes can happen, the faithful are taken by the idea that the world is subject to demiurgical struggles, or an incessant battle between good and evil spirits, or Angels and demons, in which man is left at the mercy of superior forces and over which he is helpless; such cosmologies bear little relation to the true Gospel vision of the struggle to overcome the Devil, which requires moral commitment, a fundamental option for the Gospel, humility and prayer;
  • When the daily events of life, which have nothing or little to do with our progressive maturing on the journey towards Christ are read schematically or simplistically, indeed childishly, so as to ascribe all setbacks to the Devil and all success to the Guardian Angels [op. cit., 217].


8) We do not become Guardian Angels when we die. 

Contrary to popular belief, there is no way for us to transform into an angel after death. When we die, we may be separated from our bodies for the moment, but will be reunited with them at the end of time. We don’t become an angel while we wait. All Guardian Angels were created at the beginning of time in a single moment of creation.

Remember the words of God to the prophet Jeremiah, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you” (Jeremiah 1:5).

God had a Guardian Angel in mind for you when he created the world.


9) Guardian Angels are here to help us.

The Catechism describes a Guardian Angel as a “shepherd” who is meant to protect us and lead us into everlasting life. Their chief goal is to help us get to heaven, and we are encouraged to pray to them on a daily basis, asking their help in every need.


10) How can we thank them for the help they give us?

The Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments explained:

Devotion to the Holy Angels gives rise to a certain form of the Christian life which is characterized by:

Devout gratitude to God for having placed these heavenly spirits of great sanctity and dignity at the service of man;

An attitude of devotion deriving from the knowledge of living constantly in the presence of the Holy Angels of God;- serenity and confidence in facing difficult situations, since the Lord guides and protects the faithful in the way of justice through the ministry of His Holy Angels. Among the prayers to the Guardian Angels the Angele Dei is especially popular, and is often recited by families at morning and evening prayers, or at the recitation of the Angelus [Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy, 216].


11) What is the Angele Dei prayer?

Translated into English, it reads:

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,
rule and guide.

Amen.

This prayer is particular suited for devotion to guardian angels, since it is addressed directly to one’s own guardian angel.

Fun Facts About The British Royal Family 

Fun Facts About The British Royal Family 

Fun Facts About The British Royal Family

The royal family is an intriguing bunch and we just can’t seem to get enough of them! The sweet family is so elegant, but they still know how to have fun and have a humorous side! Here are a few fun facts about the family via Bright Side:

Members Of The Royal Family are not allowed to play Monopoly:

In 2008, Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, told how the Royal Family were not allowed to play Monopoly. It’s all “because it gets too vicious.”

Queen Elizabeth II prefers to wear very bright colors: 

Conservative in dress, Queen Elizabeth II prefers to add a little more color to her clothing. Thus, she often can be seen in public wearing clothes of bright colors: fuchsia, lemon yellow, light blue. “I can’t wear beige-colored clothing because nobody can recognize me like that,” she once explained to one of her staff members. The choice of bright colors for the Queen’s clothes is determined not only by her taste and style but also by the fact that it’s easier to recognize her in a crowd.

The Queen celebrates 2 birthdays: 

She has an official birthday that is celebrated on a range of dates in the different countries of the Commonwealth of Nations. The second is her actual birthday: the 21st of April, the day she was born in 1926. The Queen prefers to celebrate her actual birthday privately in her family circle, but the official one is a national day marked by a parade and mass celebrations.

Members of the Royal Family have to accept absolutely all gifts: 

Ethics oblige them to accept with sincere courtesy any gifts presented by anyone. The fate of the gifts is decided by the Queen because all gifts belong to the Monarchy.

The Queen doesn’t need a passport to travel:

As a British passport is issued in the name of Her Majesty, it is unnecessary for the Queen to possess one when traveling overseas. It will be enough to show a coin or a banknote with her image, but even that is not required in real life. It should be noted that this exception doesn’t extend to other royalty: all other members of the Royal Family have passports.

The Queen can drive without a license plate on her state car:

The Queen is the only person in the UK who has this right. Even during World War II, when she served as the mechanic-driver of an ambulance. She’s been driving without a license since then. Eyewitnesses who saw the Queen driving noted that Elizabeth II wasn’t wearing a seatbelt.

Royals must obtain a marriage license from the Queen: 

According to the latest revision to the Inheritance Act, the first 6 people in line to the throne aged up to 25 years have to obtain a marriage license from the Queen. If she opposes, there won’t be a wedding.

[Source/Brightside]

5 Facts Of Satan Every Christian Should Know 

5 Facts Of Satan Every Christian Should Know 

Can he read thoughts? Can he predict the future? Move objects across the room? 

Satan and his hosts of demons are mysterious figures of the spiritual realm. They torment followers of Christ on a daily basis, though on most occassions their actions are invisible to the eye.

Over the centuries, the Church has grown in its understanding of these malevolent spiritual beings, Scripture also has much to tell us about Satan and his minions.

Here are five facts that help shed more    light on these dark creatures.

What was Satan before his fall into darkness?


The Catechism of the Catholic Church affirms, “The Church teaches that Satan was at first a good angel, made by God” (CCC 391). He is traditionally named Lucifer, or “light bearer,” when he was a bright angel of light (cf. Isaiah 14:12-15).


Besides that, the Church has varying traditions as to what kind of angel Satan was. Saint Thomas Aquinas argues in his Summa that,Cherubim is interpreted ‘fulness of knowledge,’ while ‘Seraphim’ means ‘those who are on fire,’ or ‘who set on fire.’ Consequently Cherubim is derived from knowledge; which is compatible with mortal sin; but Seraphim is derived from the heat of charity, which is incompatible with mortal sin. Therefore the first angel who sinned is called, not a Seraph, but a Cherub.”


However, there is no dogmatic declaration from the Church regarding whether Satan was a cherub or seraph.

Can Satan (or any devil) predict the future?


The Catechism declares, “The power of Satan is, nonetheless, not infinite. He is only a creature, powerful from the fact that he is pure spirit, but still a creature” (CCC 395).


The short answer is NO. Fallen angels (as well as good angels) do not have access to the future unless God reveals it to them. As Jesus says in the Gospel of Mark, “But of that day or hour, no one knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father” (Mark 13:32).


On the other hand, they can make predictions about the future based on observation. Demons by nature are extremely intelligent and can observe people and events very closely, having a sense of what will happen. Essentially they can “predict” the future with limited accuracy, not because they know something hidden, but because they are able to observe and give a general prediction like any smart human.

Can they move physical objects?


Angelic beings are powerful spiritual creatures and have limited power when it comes to physical matter. Most of the time demons perform visual tricks by negatively influencing our minds with illusions, making it appear that something is moving when it is in fact not.


Other times they can move physical objects, making them fly across the room as can be seen in various horror movies. It is a rare occurrence, but can happen. Thomas Aquinas devotes a question in his Summa explaining how this can happen.


t does Satan look like? 

All angels are pure spirits, meaning that they do not posses a physical body, though at times they can take on the appearance of a human or some other creature. The visible form that is often reported in Scripture or popular news stories is merely a facade, a mask they put on so that we can see them with our eyes. Otherwise they are naturally invisible creatures.

Artists have used various images to depict Satan, such as a dragon, serpent, or a some other mythical creature. However, according to Satan’s nature he is without physical form.


Can Satan cast people into Hell?


The Catechism is very clear on this topic, “To die in mortal sin without repenting and accepting God’s merciful love means remaining separated from him for ever by our own free choice. This state of definitive self-exclusion from communion with God and the blessed is called ‘hell’” (CCC 1033).


Simply put, No, Satan can not cast/force people into Hell. We choose to go there out of our own rejection of God. Satan may influence us during our time on earth, but we are still free and make that choice at the end of our lives. If a human goes to Hell, it is because he has chosen to do so and goes there freely.

Secrets Of The Spiritual Realm: 12 Angelic Facts Every Christian Must Know.

Secrets Of The Spiritual Realm: 12 Angelic Facts Every Christian Must Know.

Archangel Michael, Protector Of The Earth


Secrets of the Spiritual Realm: 12 Angelic Facts Every Christian Must Know.



    

“Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” – 1 Peter 5.8.




Are humans alone in the universe as intelligent beings? The Catholic Church has always believed and taught that the answer is no: the universe is in fact filled with many kinds of intelligent, other-worldly beings that we call ANGELS. And they are up to all sorts of amazing things!

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