And they also are a bridge, because they are with us as they contemplate the Father
Pope Francis spelled out three dangers that guardian angels protect us from, on this day that the Church celebrates these special protectors.
He drew from two Scripture passages from today’s readings in his homily at Casa Santa Marta:
“Behold, I send an angel before you, to guard you on the way and to bring you to the place which I have prepared.” “Do not despise one of these little ones,” because “their angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father.”
The first danger the pope pointed out is the danger of never getting started on the journey of life at all:
There is the danger of not going on the journey. And how many people settle down, and don’t set out on the journey, and their whole life is stalled, without moving, without doing anything… It is a danger. Like that man in the Gospel who was afraid to invest the talent. He buried it, and [said], “I am at peace, I am calm. I can’t make a mistake. So I won’t take a risk.” And so many people don’t know how to make the journey, or are afraid of taking risks, and they are stalled. But we know that the rule is that those who are stalled in life end up corrupted. Like water: when the water is stopped up in a place, the mosquitos come, they lay their eggs, and everything is corrupted. Everything. The angels help us, they push us to continue on the journey.
This is what it’s like to see an angel
Then, the pope continued, there is the danger of going astray. This is a danger that can be corrected quickly if it’s caught right away.
Finally, he suggested, there is the danger of leaving the road and losing ourselves.
Our guardian angels, said Pope Francis, are there to help us avoid these dangers. But we need to ask for their help and be mindful of their presence.
And the Lord says, “Have respect for their presence.” The angel is authoritative; he has authority to guide us. Listen to him. “Hearken to his voice, and do not rebel against him.” Listen to the inspirations, which are always from the Holy Spirit – but the angel inspires them. But I want to ask you a question: Do you speak with your angel? Do you know the name of your angel? Do you listen to your angel? Do you allow yourself to be led by the hand along the path, or do you need to be pushed to move?
Then, considering the passage from the Gospel, the pope noted how our guardian angels are a bridge to the Father; they not only help us to journey well, but also show us our destination.
In the “mystery of the guardianship of the angels,” the pope said, there is also the idea of “the contemplation of God the Father,” which we can only understand if we are given that grace from the Lord.
Our angel is not only with us; he also sees God the Father. He is in relationship with Him. He is the daily bridge, from the moment we arise to the moment we go to bed. He accompanies us and is a link between us and God the Father. The angel is the daily gateway to transcendence, to the encounter with the Father: that is, the angel helps me to go forward because he looks upon the Father, and he knows the way. Let us not forget these companions along the journey.