We usually associate Guardian Angels with children. In the gospel reading for the Feast of Guardian Angels, October 2, Jesus says we can’t get to heaven unless we become like little children whose “angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father.” (Matthew 18,1-5,10)
Artists, like the above, usually picture Guardian Angels with children, protecting and guiding them as they go on their way in a dangerous world.
Yet, the angels we read about in the Bible are more than protectors of children; they’re signs of God’s involvement in the whole world. They bring God’s message to Mary and Joseph and the prophets. They bring bread to Elijah in the desert and save Daniel in the lion’s den. They’re part of God’s providential hand dealing with the world. They guide nations, the human family and creation itself. Angels are everywhere instruments of God’s power and love and justice.
However smart or independent or grown-up we think are, God knows we’re still little children. We never outgrow God’s guidance and care: we have “loyal, prudent, powerful protectors and guides. They keep us so our ways cannot be overpowered or led astray.” So that’s us in the picture above.
I think of the “principle of subsidiarity” on the feastday of the Guardian Angels. God spreads his power around. I also remember that sometime ago I nearly hit a truck ahead of me but something suddenly stopped me. “Thanks.”
O God, in your infinite providence you deign to send your holy angels to be our guardians. Grant to us who pray to you
that we may be defended by them in this life
and rejoice with them in the next.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son.