Presentation Page 5
St. Michael, Strength of God
Published by Divine Word Publications
Written by Fr. Lawrence Lovasik, S.V.D.
IMPRIMI POTEST, NIHIL OBSTAT, IMPRIMATUR: 1957
When the second Person of the Blessed Trinity became man, the sublime office of guarding the Savior during the thirty-three years of His earthly life fell to God's zealous advocate, St. Michael. This is the pious belief of eminent Doctors and theologians. And since the Ark of the Covenant has been replaced by the tabernacle, St. Michael guards the Blessed Eucharist and keeps watch over the thousands of tabernacles and altars scattered throughout the world. Even so, he zealously guards and protects Christ's Vicar upon earth, the reigning Pope.
It has been revealed to various Saints that the great Archangel is the special guardian of the Blessed Sacrament; that he accompanies It everywhere----in the hands of the priest, upon the throne of exposition, in the tabernacle, when borne in procession, on Its obscure visits to the sick, or wherever the love of the divine Victim may cause It to be borne. Day and night he keeps faithful vigil before the tabernacle in loving adoration.
Christ, silent and veiled in the Holy Eucharist, and Christ, visible, and speaking to us in the person of the Pope------these are the two objects of Satan's inveterate hatred and rage. And these are also the two objects of St. Michael's greatest devotion and solicitude. Let us range ourselves under the banner of St. Michael, and by active zeal in the interests of Jesus, atone for the many outrages against the Blessed Sacrament and Christ's Vicar.
The thought of the day of judgment justly fills every thinking soul with a wholesome fear . God has mercifully concealed from us the day and the hour when this dread event shall occur. Our Lord Himself, after describing the terrors of the end of the world, said to His disciples:
"But that day and hour no one knows, no, not even the Angels of Heaven, but the Father only" [Mt. 24: 36]. Nevertheless, our Lord foretold certain signs which would precede the end of the world and be a warning of its approach. These signs are described in the 24th chapter of the Gospel of St. Matthew.
When the end of the world draws near, St. Michael will wage a final battle against the Antichrist, who by false miracles will endeavor to seduce even the elect of God. St. Michael will then defend the Church against frightful persecutions. This is foretold in the Book of Daniel [12: 1], where the prophet, speaking of the end of the world and the Antichrist, says: " At that time shall Michael rise up, the great prince, who stands for the children of Your people! And a time shall come such as never was, from the time that nations began even until that time."
After this most valiant Archangel has once more conquered the prince of darkness and has cast him into the abyss of hell, he will sound the trumpet whose resonance will call the dead to life and summon all men before the Eternal Judge, to receive their final sentence of reward or punishment. Happy shall we be if in that awful hour we find an advocate in the glorious Archangel Michael! Let us always be faithful in invoking him.Past and Present Times
The Irish people have always held Michael, the captain of the Heavenly host, in great veneration, as is evident from the number of ancient churches dedicated to him, and the frequency with which his name is given to their children. They termed him "Adrigh na Aaingeal----the High King of the Angels." Veneration of St. Michael was at one time practiced so extensively in England that in the year 1114 King Ethelred ordained that the three days immediately preceding the feast of St. Michael should be days of strict fast. In the Middle Ages, the knights, especially, consecrated themselves to St. Michael. The German people, too, have long been fervently devoted to this holy Archangel. Devotion to St. Michael is likewise gaining favor in our own country.