Saint of the day:
Feast of the Holy Guardian Angel
The Story of the Feast of the Guardian Angels
Perhaps no aspect of Catholic piety is as comforting to parents as the belief that an angel protects their little ones from dangers real and imagined. Yet guardian angels are not only for children. Their role is to represent individuals before God, to watch over them always, to aid their prayer, and to present their souls to God at death.
The concept of an angel assigned to guide and nurture each human being is a development of Catholic doctrine and piety based on Scripture but not directly drawn from it. Jesus’ words in Matthew 18:10 best support the belief: “See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father.”
Devotion to the angels began to develop with the birth of the monastic tradition. Saint Benedict gave it impetus and Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, the great 12th-century reformer, was such an eloquent spokesman for the guardian angels that angelic devotion assumed its current form in his day.
A feast in honor of the guardian angels was first observed in the 16th century. In 1615, Pope Paul V added it to the Roman calendar.
The Nine Choirs of Angels
These are the highest order or choir of angels. They are the angels who are attendants or guardians before God's throne. They praise God, calling, "Holy Holy Holy is the Lord of Hosts". the only Bible reference is Isaiah 6:1-7. One of them touched Isaiah's lips with a live coal from the altar, cleansing him from sin. Seraphim have six wings, two cover their faces, two cover their feet, and two are for flying.
Cherubim rank after the seraphim and are the second highest in the nine hierarchies or choirs of angels. The Old Testament does not reveal any evidence that the Jews considered them as intercessors or helpers of God. They were closely linked in God's glory. They are manlike in appearance and double-winged and were guardians of God's glory. They symbolized then, God's power and mobility. In the New Testament, they are alluded to as celestial attendants in the Apocalypse (Rv 4-6). Catholic tradition describes them as angels who have an intimate knowledge of God and continually praise Him.
Thrones are the Angels of pure Humility, Peace and Submisssion. They reside in the area of the cosmos where material form begins to take shape.
The lower Choir of Angels need the Thrones to access God.
Dominions are Angels of Leadership. They regulate the duties of the angels, making known the commands of God.
Virtues are known as the Spirits of Motion and control the elements. They are sometimes referred to as "the shining ones."
They govern all nature. They have control over seasons, stars, moon; even the sun is subject to their command.
They are also in charge of miracles and provide courage, grace, and valor.
Powers are Warrior Angels against evil defending the cosmos and humans. They are known as potentates.
They fight against evil spirits who attempt to wreak chaos through human beings.
The chief is said to be either Samael or Camael, both angels of darkness.
Archangels are generally taken to mean "chief or leading angel" ( Jude 9; 1 Thes 4:16), they are the most frequently mentioned throughout the Bible. They may be of this or other hierarchies as St. Michael Archangel, who is a princely Seraph. The Archangels have a unique role as God's messenger to the people at critical times in history and salvation (Tb 12:6, 15; Jn 5:4; Rv 12:7-9) as in The Annunciation and Apocalypse.
A feast day celebrating the Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael is celebrated throughout the Church Sep 29.
A special part of the Byzantine Liturgy invokes the "Cherubic Hymn" which celebrates these archangels and the guardian angels particularly.
Of special significance is St. Michael as he has been invoked as patron and protector by the Church from the time of the Apostles. The Eastern Rite and many others place him over all the angels, as Prince of the Seraphim. He is described as the "chief of princes" and as the leader of the forces of heaven in their triumph over Satan and his followers. The angel Gabriel first appeared in the Old Testament in the prophesies of Daniel, he announced the prophecy of 70 weeks (Dn 9:21-27). He appeared to Zechariah to announce the birth of St. John the Baptist (Lk 1:11). It was also Gabriel which proclaimed the Annunciation of Mary to be the mother of our Lord and Saviour. (Lk 1:26) The angel Raphael first appeared in the book of Tobit (Tobias)Tb 3:25, 5:5-28, 6-12). He announces "I am the Angel Raphael, one of the seven who stand before the throne of God." (Tb 12:15)
In the New Testament Principalities refers to one type of spiritual (metaphysical) being which are now quite hostile to God and human beings. (Rom 8:38; 1 Cor 15:24; Eph 1:21; 3:10; 6:12; Col 1:16; 2:10, 15) Along with the principalities are the powers (Rom 8:38; 1 Cor 15:24; Eph 1:21; 1 Pt 3:22; 2 Thes 1:7); and cosmological powers (1 Cor 15:24; Eph 1:21; 3:10; Col 2:15);Dominions (Eph 1:21; Col 1:16) and thrones (Col1:16). The clarity of the New Testament witness helps see that these beings were created through Christ and for Him (Col 1:16). Given their hostility to God and humans due to sin, Christ's ultimate rule over them (ibid) expresses the reign of the Lord over all in the cosmos. This is the Lordship of Christ, which reveals God's tremendous salvation in conquering sin and death at the cross, and now takes place in the Church. (Eph 3:10)
These angels are closest to the material world and human begins. They deliver the prayers to God and God's answers and other messages to humans. Angels have the capacity to access any and all other Angels at any time. They are the most caring and social to assist those who ask for help.
Holy Holy Holy
(also sang on Trinity Sunday)
Isaiah 6:3 Holy, holy, holy is the Lord ...
Revelation 4:8-11 ... And they do not rest day or night, saying: “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!”
..."You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created.”
Angel Biscuits Recipe
1/2 cup warm water (100°F to 110°F)
1 (1/4-oz.) pkg. active dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp.) (or compressed yeast)
1 teaspoon plus 3 Tbsp. granulated sugar, divided
5 cups all-purpose un-beached bread flour (White-lily, winter soft style)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup frozen salted butter, grated
1/2 cup cold shortening, grated
2 cups cold whole buttermilk
6 tablespoons salted butter, melted and divided
Stir together warm water, yeast, and 1 teaspoon of the sugar in a small bowl. Let stand 5 minutes.
Stir together flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and remaining 3 tablespoons sugar in a large bowl; cut cold butter and cold shortening into flour mixture with a pastry blender or 2 forks until crumbly.
Place the flour mixture in the freezer for 10 minutes
Add yeast mixture and buttermilk to flour mixture, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened.
Don't over mix or the dough will be though (20 times or less). The dough will be sticky.
Cover bowl with plastic wrap; chill at least 2 hours....up to 5 days, use when ready.
Preheat oven to 400°F. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead 3 or 4 times. Gently roll into a 1⁄2-inch-thick circle, and fold in half; repeat 4 times to build the layers. Gently roll to 1⁄2-inch thickness; cut with a 2-inch round cutter. Reroll remaining scraps, and cut with cutter. Place rounds with sides touching in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet or on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. (If using a 12-inch skillet, place remaining biscuits in a 10-inch skillet or on a baking sheet.) Brush biscuits with 3 tablespoons of the melted butter.
Bake in preheated oven until golden, 15 to 20 minutes. Brush with remaining 3 tablespoons melted butter, and serve.
1 stick salted butter, frozen, grated
1/2 cup cold shortening, grated
5 cups self-rising flour (white lily four)
1/2 tsp salt
2 cup chilled buttermilk
2 Tbsp. butter, melted
(to brush on top after the biscuits have baked)
**** When baking from the biscuits you've frozen (if you froze some of them) I found they baked better and rose higher at 450` F. For the same amount of time. I put my frozen biscuits on the baking sheet and let them stay at room temperature until my oven reaches 450 F and then place them in the oven. If NOT frozen, use the directions below:
Preheat oven to 475°. Grate frozen butter using large holes of a box grater. Toss together grated butter, shortening, salt and flour in a medium bowl. Chill 10 minutes in the freezer. THE FREEZING IS A CRUCIAL STEP SO DON'T LEAVE IT OUT!!!
Make a well in center of mixture. Add chilled buttermilk, and stir until well blended (about 15 times).Don't stir more than 20 times or you'll have tough biscuits. The dough will be sticky.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Lightly sprinkle flour over top of dough. With a floured rolling pin, roll dough into a 3/4-inch thick rectangle (about 9 x 5 inches).
Fold dough in half so short ends meet. Repeat rolling and folding process 4 more times, a total of 5 times.
Roll dough with a floured rolling pin to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut with a 2 1/2-inch floured, round cutter, reshaping scraps and flouring surface as needed.
Place dough rounds, side by side, in a parchment paper-lined jelly-roll pan. (Dough rounds should touch.) Bake at 475° for 15 minutes or lightly browned. Remove from oven; brush with melted butter. Serve immediately. Makes 12 to 14 biscuits.