Saints Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, Archangels
St Michael is mentioned in the Apocalypse as the leader of the heavenly host; St Gabriel appears in Daniel and was also the bearer of the Annunciation to the Blessed Virgin Mary. St Raphael in the Book of Tobit heals Tobit of his blindness. His name means God heals.
Entrance Antiphon: Ps 102: 20
Bless the Lord, all you his angels, mighty in power, fulfilling his word, and heeding his voice.
O God, who dispose in marvellous order ministries both angelic and human, graciously grant that our life on earth may be defended by those who watch over us as they minister perpetually to you in heaven. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
First reading: Daniel 7:9-10, 13-14
As I watched, thrones were set in place and one of great age took his seat. His robe was white as snow, the hair of his head as pure as wool. His throne was a blaze of flames, its wheels were a burning fire. A stream of fire poured out, issuing from his presence. A thousand thousand waited on him, ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him. A court was held and the books were opened. I gazed into the visions of the night. And I saw, coming on the clouds of heaven, one like a son of man. He came to the one of great age and was led into his presence. On him was conferred sovereignty, glory and kingship, and men of all peoples, nations and languages became his servants. His sovereignty is an eternal sovereignty which shall never pass away, nor will his empire ever be destroyed.
R/ In the presence of the angels I will bless you, O Lord.
I thank you, Lord, with all my heart: you have heard the words of my mouth. In the presence of the angels I will bless you. I will adore before your holy temple.
I thank you for your faithfulness and love, which excel all we ever knew of you. On the day I called, you answered; you increased the strength of my soul.
All earth’s kings shall thank you when they hear the words of your mouth. They shall sing of the Lord’s ways: ‘How great is the glory of the Lord!’
Gospel Acclamation: Ps102:21
Alleluia, alleluia! Give thanks to the Lord, all his hosts, his servants who do his will. Alleluia!
Gospel: John 1:47-51
When Jesus saw Nathanael coming, he said of him, “There is an Israelite who deserves the name, incapable of deceit.” “How do you know me?” said Nathanael. “Before Philip came to call you,” said Jesus “I saw you under the fig tree.” Nathanael answered, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God, you are the King of Israel.” Jesus replied, “You believe that just because I said: I saw you under the fig tree. You will see greater things than that.’ And then he added ‘I tell you most solemnly, you will see heaven laid open and, above the Son of Man, the angels of God ascending and descending.”
Prayer over the Offerings
We offer you a sacrifice of praise, O Lord, humbly entreating, that, as these gifts are borne by the ministry of Angels into the presence of your majesty, so you may receive them favourably and make them profitable for our salvation. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Ps 137: 1
I will thank you, Lord, with all my heart; in the presence of the Angels I will praise you.
Prayer after Communion
Having been nourished with heavenly Bread, we beseech you humbly, O Lord, that, drawing from it new strength, under the faithful protection of your Angels, we may advance boldly along the way of salvation. Through Christ our Lord.
Today, the Church celebrates the feast of three archangels. Michael (Who is like God?), who plays the role of defending us from evil. He is the angel who won the battle over Satan when the latter rebelled against God. If Jesus could be tempted, then we should rest assured that the devil is always around us, so we need the intervention of Archangel Michael. Gabriel (Strength of God) announced to Zachariah the forthcoming birth of John the Baptist, and to Mary the birth of Jesus. Do we listen to the message of God in our lives through this Archangel? Raphael is the archangel who looked after Tobias on his journey. He helped Tobit and his family in their sufferings and misfortunes. Raphael recalls our Guardian Angels. Do our guardian angels feel unemployed because we give them very little or no attention? The Gospel of this feast reminds us that Jesus is the message of God, and God speaks and acts through him.