Michaelmas? Huh, What?

Yesterday was, in the traditional Catholic calendar, the Feast of the Dedication of the Basilica of St. Michael, in Italy. In short: Michaelmas.

So what? I hear you ask? Well, Fr. John Zuhlsdorf tells us:

As a “mere” Archangel, Michael belongs to one of the lower choirs.  But such are God’s might and plan, that Michael is the one who restrained Satan, highest in the hierarchy and mightiest of all the angels before his fall.  Michael it will be who chains the great “red dragon” of Revelation 12.

OK, a lot of this strikes me, and maybe you, as Catholic mumbo jumbo and a diminution of the Faith in Christ onto a whole (heavenly) multitude of other characters. And maybe it is. But it also presents in a popular form the many facets of our Faith – here the faith (or Church) Militant defending itself from evil. Something that does appear in short supply these days.

Part of the reason we take note is this is because as Fr Gavin Ashenden tells us:

“After Leo XIII had celebrated a morning Mass, he went to a meeting with the Cardinals. Suddenly he collapsed into unconsciousness. The doctors who came to his aid found no cause for the collapse, although his pulse almost ceased. Suddenly he awoke and was fresh as ever. He reported that he had seen a terrible vision. He was granted to see the devil’s seductiveness and ravaging for the coming ages in all lands. In this distress St. Michael the Archangel appeared and cast Satan with all his demons back into the infernal abyss. Leo XIII thereupon ordered, shortly after 1880, the Common Prayer to St. Michael.”

Pope Leo was so shocked by his vision of the unleashing of evil in the Church and in the world in the 20th Century, he asked all Catholics to pray this prayer after celerbrating the Eucharist.

He then provides us with the prayer Leo taught us:

O glorious Prince of the Heavenly Host, St. Michael, the Archangel, defend us in the battle and in the fearful warfare that we are waging against the principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, against the evil spirits. Come thou, to the assistance of men, whom Almighty God created immortal, making them in His own image and likeness and redeeming them at a great price from the tyranny of Satan. Fight this day the battle of the Lord with thy legions of holy Angels, even as of old, thou didst fight against Lucifer, the leader of the proud spirits and all his rebel Angels, who were powerless to stand against thee.

Neither was their place found anymore in Heaven. And that apostle Angel, transformed into an Angel of darkness who still creeps about the earth to encompass our ruin, was cast headlong into the abyss together with his followers.

But, behold, that first enemy of mankind, and a murderer from the beginning, has regained his confidence. Changing himself into an Angel of light, he goes about with the whole multitude of the wicked spirits to invade the earth and blot out the Name of God and of His Christ, to plunder, to slay, and to consign to eternal damnation the souls that have been destined for a crown of everlasting life. This wicked serpent, like an unclean torrent, pours into men of depraved minds and corrupt hearts the poison of his malice, the spirit of lying, impiety, and blasphemy, and the deadly breath of impurity and every form of vice and iniquity. These crafty enemies of mankind have filled to overflowing with gall and wormwood the Church, which is the Bride of the Lamb without spot. They have laid profane hands upon her most sacred treasures.

Make haste, therefore, O invincible Prince, to help the people of God against the inroads of the lost spirits and grant us the victory.

Now mind, I’m a fairly good Lutheran, I  can’t countenance praying to archangels and such, although I have found it efficacious to ask Jesus’s Mom to intercede with him for me on occasion. But given the way the world currently is, it could do no harm to ask Jesus and his heavenly father to unleash such a doughty champion on our behalf.

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11 Responses to Michaelmas? Huh, What?

  1. Scoop says:

    Yes indeed and a good number of priests performed the St. Michael Exorcism yesterday at 9:30 A.M. EST. Again Fr. Z told us about it day before yesterday: http://wdtprs.com/blog/2019/09/action-item-priests-in-rome-world-to-use-prayer-of-exorcism-long-st-michael-prayer-against-diabolical-influence-in-vatican/

    Liked by 1 person

  2. audremyers says:

    Loved this article, Neo. Refreshing, interesting, topical – loved it.

    I’m Anglican and we don’t ‘do’ the saints, either. However, I’ve watched enough EWTN to be a little more savvy about them. But my attitude has always been, why go to the floor boss when you can go to the Manager.

    Now…if you would just write something about the blessing of the animals, I’d be greatly appreciative.

    Liked by 1 person

    • NEO says:

      We’ll see. I haven’t seen much about it., other than some disparaging comments.


    • Scoop says:

      The blessing of the animals in the Catholic Church (and many other denominations) is primarily a prayer of thanksgiving to our creator God who gives us good things and many blessings; animals and crops being necessary for our survival and we exhibit a resplendent awe for these many blessings that our Creator God gave to mankind for our use. The origin dates to about 3000 BC within the Jewish tradition but is more likely to be thought of in the Christian context as a movement by St. Francis some 800 years ago. Just like we give thanks for our meals and ask our Churches, homes and families to be blessed by Almighty God we also realize that what is necessary for our livelihood and well being also extends to our produce and our animals; and all are gifts to men as goods created for our betterment and even survival. So we ask God to bless these things (usually on Oct 4th . . . feast day of St. Francis). It is not, above all to be thought of as some pantheistic rite for it is directed to the one God in thanksgiving and all humility for how wonderfully He has provided for us.

      Also let us not forget that among the 6 actions of satan against man is also what is called “infestation” which bodes poorly for us. Blessing these things and ordering them back to God (thus exorcising them from any malfeasance caused by the enemy of God is a reminder to us that we should be grateful and take care of all the bounty that God has provided man).

      Interested in the 6 major actions of Satan upon man; you might try reading this short explanation as explained by the late great exorcist of Rome, Gabriele Amorth: https://op54rosary.ning.com/forum/topics/father-gabriele-amorth-and-spiritual-warfare-6-types-of-extraordi

      Liked by 2 people

      • Scoop says:

        Sorry meant to say 3000 years ago and not 3000 BC above.

        Liked by 1 person

      • audremyers says:

        I can’t thank you enough for this wonderful explanation! I’m humbled by your kindness and overwhelmed that I had never come across this information anywhere before. Am also a little embarrassed as I had always thought it a ‘made up’ thing that the clergy did for elderly people who love their dogs. Yes; I will admit to being that stupid.

        Again, thank you for sharing this with me – with all of us.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. the unit says:

    Glad, at least worldly according to Hillary and progressives, to be in the lower earthly choir. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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