HOW THE PRAYER OF ST. MICHAEL
CAME TO BE WRITTEN
is impossible to understand why the prayer to St. Michael came to
be omitted after all Low Masses on Sunday, especially now when we
need the protection of this angelic warrior more than at an other
time in history. We wish the Church authorities would reinstate
the great prayer to St. Michael, and perhaps that would happen if
we respectfully petitioned of bishops. In the meantime, we can all
say the prayer privately in our homes, chapels and churches. We
need this prince of the heavenly host in the present struggle.
Leo XIII, realizing by Divine enlightenment the present and future
struggles of the Church against the powers of hell, felt convinced
that through the intervention of St. Michael, hell would be conquered,
and the Church restored to peace and liberty. He therefore composed
a prayer in honor of the warrior archangel, and ordered it to be
recited daily after Los Mass in all the churches throughout the
This is how this
prayer came to be written: It is said that one day having celebrated
the Holy Sacrifice, the aged Pontiff Leo XIII was in conference
with the Cardinals. Suddenly he sank to the floor in a deep swoon.
Physicians who hastened to his side feared that he had already expired,
for they could find no trace of his pulse. However, after a short
interval the Holy Father rallied, and opening his eyes exclaimed
with great emotion: "Oh what a horrible picture I was permitted
to see!" He had been shown in spirit the tremendous activities
of the evil spirits and their ravings against the Church. But in
the midst of this vision of horror he had also beheld consoling
visions of the glorious Archangel Michael, who had appeared and
cast Satan and his legions back into the abyss of hell. Soon afterward
he composed the well-known prayer.
We know that
the gates of hell shall never prevail against the Church, for Our
Lord has promised to be with her till the end of time, but we must
do our part in defending her cause. God might cast the angels down
to hell by a single act of His will, but He chose rather to send
against them His armies of loyal spirits, under the leadership of
the great St. Michael. So too, in the present critical times, He
could confound the enemies of the Church by merely willing to do
so. But He wills, rather, that we should cooperate in her defense,
under the leadership of the great captain of the heavenly hosts.
John Paul II (St. Peter's Square, Sunday, April 24 1994):
strengthen us for the spiritual battle we are told about in the
Letter to the Ephesians: "Draw strength from the Lord and from
His mighty power" (Ephesians 6:10). The Book of Revelation
refers to this same battle, recalling before our eyes the image
of St. Michael the Archangel (Revelation 12:7). Pope Leo XIII certainly
had a very vivid recollection of this scene when, at the end of
the last century, he introduced a special prayer to St. Michael
throughout the Church. Although this prayer is no longer recited
at the end of Mass, I ask everyone not to forget it and to recite
it to obtain help in the battle against forces of darkness and against
the spirit of this world."
OF THE SAINTS
ST. ALPHONSUS LIGUORI
St. Alphonsus was born near Naples, Italy, in 1732.
St. Eusebius was born on the island of Sardinia, Italy, around 283.
ST. PETER JULIAN EYMARD
St. Peter Julian Eymard was born in a small town in the diocese of Grenoble, France in 1786.
BLESSED FREDERIC JANSSOONE
Blessed Frederic Janssoone was born in Flanders in 1838.
DEDICATION OF ST. MARY MAJOR
St. Mary Major is important to Christendom for three reasons:
St. Mary Major is important to Christendom for three reasons:
St. Cajetan was born in Vicenza, Italy, in 1480, the son of a count.
St. Dominic was born in Castile, Spain, in 1170.
BLESSED JOHN OF RIETI
Blessed John lived in the first half of the fourteenth century.
St. Lawrence, the famous martyr of Rome, lived in the third century.
St. Clare was born around 1193 in Assisi, Italy. She lived at the time of St. Francis of Assisi.
ST. MAXIMILIAN KOLBE
Raymond Kolbe was born in Poland in 1894.
THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY
This feast of Mary celebrates a special privilege of Mary, our Mother.
ST. STEPHEN OF HUNGARY
St. Stephen was born around 969 in Hungary. This saint's name had been Vaik.
BLESSED JOAN DELANOUE
St. Joan Delanoue was born in 1666. Her family had a small but successful business.
ST. JANE FRANCES DE CHANTAL
St. Jane was born in Dijon, France, in 1572.
ST. JOHN EUDES
St. John Eudes was born in Normandy, France, in 1601.
St. Bernard was born in 1090 in Dijon, France.
ST. PIUS X
St. Pius X, the great pope, was named Joseph Sarto. He was born in 1835, the son of a mailman in Riese, Italy.
ST. ROSE OF LIMA
St. Rose, the South American saint, was born in Lima, Peru, in 1586.
"Bartholomew" was one of the first followers of Jesus.
ST. LOUIS OF FRANCE
St. Louis was born on April 25, 1214. His father was King Louis VIII of France and his mother was Queen Blanche.
ST. JOSEPH CALASANZ
St. Joseph was born in 1556, in his father's castle in Spain. He went to college and became a lawyer.
ST. ELIZABETH BICHIER
St. Elizabeth was born in 1773. As a little girl, her favorite game was building castles in the sand.
St. Monica, the famous mother of St. Augustine, was born in 332 in Tagaste, northern Africa.
St. Augustine was born in Tagaste in modern Algeria on November 13, 354. This famous son of St. Monica spent many years in wicked living and in false beliefs.
BEHEADING OF ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST
St. John the Baptist was a cousin of Jesus. His mother was St. Elizabeth and his father was Zechariah.
"St. Pammachius was a distinguished Christian layman who lived in the fourth century.
St. Aidan was a seventh-century Irish monk. He lived at the great monastery of Iona, which St. Columban had founded.
PHOTO OF THE MONTH
of the Relics of the Passion
for Holy Relics)
Why did Jesus, the sinless one sent from the Father in heaven,
submit himself to John’s baptism? John preached a
baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Luke
3:3). In this humble submission we see a foreshadowing of
the “baptism” of Jesus bloody death upon the
cross. Jesus’ baptism is the acceptance and the beginning
of his mission as God’s suffering Servant (Isaiah
52:13-15; 53:1-12). He allowed himself to be numbered among
sinners. Jesus submitted himself entirely to his Father’s
will. Out of love he consented to this baptism of death
for the remission of our sins. Do you know the joy of trust
and submission to God?