The Feast Day of the Guardian Angels is celebrated by the Catholic Church on October 2. Pope Paul V began the tradition in 1608.
Scripture has many references to Angels. The word angel comes from the Greek word angelos which means messenger.
In Matthew 18:10 Jesus says “Take care that you do not despise one of these little ones; for, I tell you, in heaven their angels continually see the face of My Father in heaven.”
Some examples of angels in scripture are the following:
- An Angel calls Abraham (Genesis 22:11)
- Jacob wrestling with the angel (Genesis 32:23-34).
- Angels act as guides, as in the case of Moses’ angel (Exodus 23:20-23).
- An Angel accompanied Tobias on his journey (Tobit:9)
- An Angel delivered St. Peter from prison (Acts:12)
- An Angel preserved the life of St. Paul (Acts:12)
- An Angel appears to the Virgin Mary (Luke 1:26-28)
- Angels tell the wise men where to find the infant Jesus (Luke 2:8-15)
- Angels present at the Ascension of Jesus (Acts 1:9-11)
The ‘choirs of angels’ contain nine types of angels: Listed from highest to lowest they are as follows:
Seraphim, Cherubim and Thrones honor and serve the Kingdom of God. Dominations preside over the government of the universe. Virtues watch over the course of nature’s laws; Powers hold evil spirits in subjection; Principalities protect the entire human race; Archangels give commands to the angels; and Angels protect individual humans.
Some of the Angels turned against God to follow Lucifer. These angels are called Fallen Angels.
Tradition tells us that each of us has a guardian angel who guides us and protects us from harm. The following prayers are often said seeking this protection.
Angel of God, my guardian Dear
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 and guide. Amen.
Grant me Protection
O Holy Angel of the Lord, Faithful guardian of my spirit, soul and body. Pray to God for me and protect me from the Evil One. Keep my feet on the sure path to salvation.
Strengthen my mind in the true way. And illumine my soul with good thoughts that I may arrive safely at the gates of heaven.
The following quotes from the saints throughout history show that the belief in angels has been constant in the Church.
St. Teresa of Calcutta
Never travel faster than your guardian angel can fly.
St. Therese of Lisieux
Even when alone be cheerful, remembering always that you are in the sight of angels.
Guardian Angel flying with child
St. Francis de Sales
To be an angel in prayer, and a beast in one’s relations with people is to go lame in both legs.
St. Francis de Sales
Make yourself familiar with the angels and behold them frequently in spirit; for without being seen, they are present with you.
Guardian Angel watching over child
The servants of Christ are protected by invisible rather than visible beings. But if these guard you, they do so because they have been summoned by your prayer.
The air, earth and ocean, everything is full of Angels.
Guardian Angel with Child
St. Peter Chrysologus
The angels rejoice and celebrate with Christ over the return of the Lord’s sheep. He sought us on earth; let us seek Him in heaven.
St. John Vianney
Our Guardian Angels are our most faithful friends, because they are with us day and night, always and everywhere. We ought to invoke them. The Angels take great pleasure in helping us with our enterprises when they are in accordance with God’s will.
Guardian angel with sleeping child
St. John Bosco
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.
Guardian Angel praying with child
An angel can illuminate the thought and mind of man by strengthening the power of vision.
St Thomas Aquinas
The world of pure spirits stretches between the divine nature and the world of human beings; because divine wisdom has ordained that the higher should look after the lower, angels execute the divine plan for human salvation; they are our guardians, who free us when hindered and help to bring us home.
St. Thomas Aquinas
Guardian Angel guarding children
We cannot pass our guardian angel’s bounds, resigned or sullen; he will hear our sighs.
Guardian Angel carrying child
Let us walk in such a manner before the eyes of the Angels that we do not offend their sight.
As often as a great temptation or sorrow approaches you call to your guide, your protector and say “Sir, help me, or I got to destruction!”