September 29, 2016
Sts. Michael, Gabriel, Raphael, archangels
Jn 1: 47-51
When Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him, he said of him, “Here is truly an Israelite in whom there is no deceit!” Nathanael asked him, “Where did you get to know me?” Jesus answered, “I saw you under the fig tree before Philip called you.” Nathanael replied, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” Jesus answered, “Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than these.” And he said to him, “Very truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Healing - Proclaiming - Protecting
Today we celebrate the feast of the Archangels. These three archangels help God’s people in diverse ways throughout Scripture: Raphael heals, Gabriel proclaims, and Michael protects. These angelic duties are ones we can participate in as well. How do I help those in my life find healing and hope? How do I joyfully proclaim the truth about Jesus? How do I fight against evil and protect the vulnerable?
In today’s Gospel, Nathanael meets Jesus and is taken aback. Jesus knows a small detail about Nathanael’s life, but Jesus affirms Nathanael’s faith and honesty. He promises Nathanael that he’ll see even more amazing things if he follows Jesus as a disciple. How many of us are like Nathanael, expecting that we aren’t noticed? Sometimes it’s easy to feel like our small acts of faith are sidelined by more important people or attention-grabbing headlines, but Jesus sees into our hearts like he saw Nathanael’s. Each of us is invited to share in Jesus’ life and mission. He promises us all “greater things.” Do I take him at his word?
—Maggie Melchior is a convert to the Catholic faith. She currently serves as Coordinator of New Evangelization and Faith Formation at St. Paul Parish, Combined Locks, WI, in the Diocese of Green Bay.
Heavenly Father, you have given us archangels to assist us during our pilgrimage on earth.
Saint Michael is our protector, I ask him to come to my aid, fight for all my loved ones, and protect us from danger.
Saint Gabriel is a messenger for the Good News, I ask him to help me clearly, hear your voice and to teach me the truth. Saint Raphael is the healing angel, I ask him to take my need for healing and that of everyone I know, lift it up to your throne of grace and deliver back to us the gift of recovery.
Help us, O Lord, to realize more fully the presence of the archangels and their desire to serve us.
Holy Angels pray for us. Amen
THE POPE'S PRAYERS
Daily ExamenThe examen is a prayer popularized by St. Ignatius Loyola that helps us to recognize the ways that God is present and active in our daily lives.
- Stillness: Quiet yourself. Close your eyes and be still. Remember that in this moment you are in God’s presence and that God is now loving you. Take time to let yourself be looked at by the Lord.
- Gratitude: Take a few moments to recall one or two things from today for which you are especially grateful. Give thanks to God for these gifts and take time to savor them.
- Review: Review the events of the past day from start to finish, as if you were watching a movie. Notice the ways that God has been present today. Pay attention to your emotions and stirrings within your heart.
- Sorrow: As you have reflected upon your day, you may have noticed a moment from the day in which you have fallen short. Bring this experience to prayer and ask for God’s healing and forgiveness.
- Looking Forward: Look ahead to the next day and ask for God’s help and grace as you move forward with activities, commitments, and interactions with others. When you are ready, conclude your examen with the Our Father.
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