Monday, November 04, 2013

The Feast of All Saints 2013: The Angels

From the Breviary according to the use of the Roman Curia, 1529, the continuation of the sermon for the fourth day in the Octave of All Saints:
The most blessed spirits of the heavenly fatherland, our fellow citizens, the first-fruits of God’s creation, are fully, perfectly, and completely distinct in their orders, ever ready to serve Him; except that the destructive Lucifer, falling from heaven with his accomplices, destroyed the integrity of the Angels. But although the goodness of the Almighty created us in accord with the dignity of that army on high, and Wisdom recovered us from the complete ruin of so harmful a fall, nevertheless, we are subject to the motions of changeable nature, by which we can be dragged down to worse things. And since we are set between the higher powers and the lower, a difficult struggle still bears down upon us against the lower spirits of wickedness, such that we must fall beneath them, unless through the grace of Christ, the relief of the higher spirits comes to help us. For this reason, therefore, we keep their memory so diligently in our solemnity, that we may be helped here by their prayers and merits.
A guardian angel protecting a child, and stepping on a devil. In the Cathedral of Milan, at the altar of San Giovanni Bono in the right transept. (1763) Photograph by Giovanni dell'Orto, from Wikimedia Commons.

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