Loving Your Guardian Angel
This article begins my series on "Empowering Youth". The purpose of this series is to highlight some of the beautiful truths of the Catholic Church which can help parents and educators grab the attention of Youth and help them fall in love with the Church. If they see how beautiful the Church is, they will be more empowered to live authentic lives of the Gospel.
Guardian Angels: The teaching on Guardian Angels is a beautiful teaching that exemplifies God's love for us--He loves us so much that he gives us our very own spiritual being to protect and guide us! When I was traveling my diocese for a Catechesis program, I would often find myself with a couple extra minutes at the end of a class time, or transitioning between activities. I would proceed to tell them about Guardian Angels, and inevitably their eyes would light up. Some things they always liked to know about Guardian Angels:
- Everybody has one
- They can protect you from danger
- They act as your conscience
- You can pray to them and learn their name!
It is this last point that seemed to be the most amazing to them, and when they would ask how, I would teach them this prayer:
Angel of God, My Guardian Dear
To whom God's love commits me here
Ever this day be at my side
To light and guard, rule, and guide.
I told them that if you say this prayer to your Angel every morning, that they may reveal their name to you. They always asked if I knew my Guardian Angel's name, and I would always respond, "Samuel". This was how I first developed my devotion to my Guardian Angel, and sometimes if the kids were older, I would tell them this story:
How I learned my Guardian Angels Name:
It was a seemingly normal night on the road, and my second night at the host family I was staying with that week. My team member had let me take the bedroom with the bed, and he offered to take the couch, because he liked falling asleep watching the TV if he could. That night I couldn't sleep, and I found myself with a desire to pray the St. Micheal Prayer. I said it, and then continued to say a rosary. It didn't help with sleeping, and God seemed to be testing me that night with patience. As the night wore on I received various hot and cold flashes, as well as a feeling that I should pray for Faith. When I did sleep, I had dreams of people I never met before, and giving them roses as a symbol of God's forgiveness for them. One time after one of these dreams I woke up to get a glass of water, only to find my teammate had left all the lights on, along with EWTN. I shut off all the electronics, got my drink, and went to bed. Later, I got up again to go to the bathroom (something that is very rare for me to do) and I saw that again the lights were on, and the tv had been turned on, but that channel changed. I continued to pray. Sometime during the early morning hours I got the urge to pray to my Guardian Angel, which is something I had never really done before. I prayed asking for guidance, sleep and protection, and as I did, the name Samuel came into my head. I asked my Angel if that was his name, and I got an overwhelming feeling of love and peace in my heart. That is how I became pretty sure my Angel's name was Samuel. I slept in fits for the rest of the night, but I was comforted by my new found friend.
Regardless of whether or not I told my personal story, the children I taught where always filled with an immediate sense of awe and love, and many would proceed that very to pray to their angel at Mass or even during recess. This is a beautiful gift we have been given, and it is a means by which we can evangelize to the younger generation. It takes only love of a single truth to delve deeper and discover the richness of the Church. I believe that this teaching may be especially comforting to youth and children who feel as if they don't have any other friends--their Angel was created to be their special best friend. Let us spread this joy and help others to realize that they all have guiding light sent by God to hold their hands on their journey to Christ. They are not alone!
© 2009 R D Langr