The Return of the Prayer to St. Michael

Modern philosophy is full of all sorts of absurd theories about the illusory nature of existence and the unreliability of everything we know to be true. But the boots on the ground, living, breathing, day to day philosophy of even the most angst-ridden German nihilist or the most wild-eyed French existentialist has to be common sense realism. Even German and French philosophers must eat, sleep and conduct themselves in civil society.

There’s great consolation in the reliability of the law of gravity and the fact that it means something specific to me or anyone else when you say dog, cat, house, person, good, true and beautiful. But the last three of those words; good, true and beautiful, and maybe even person, do enjoin some philosophical reflection. They are the basis for making sense of right and wrong, obligation, prohibition and so on. Philosophy isn’t just a waste of time.

Catholicism is deeply philosophical and also deeply mystical and of late the mysticism of the Catholic world view has been confronting me with great force, and confronting the minimalist common sense realism I had more or less taken for granted.

Our parish and a number of Catholic churches I’ve been to recently have begun saying the St. Michael prayer after Mass. It is a breathtaking departure from the modern psychological deconstruction through which I have made sense of my own mental states and those of others. Pride, envy, sloth, greed, lust, gluttony and wrath are not merely maladjustments, but rather they are the snares of a spiritual being who seeks the ruin of souls. They are our weaknesses within our wounded souls, but they are also passions from outside of us, which act upon us, against which we must not be passive, or we will be swept away.

The idea that there is a spirit of pride, envy, sloth or any of the other deadly sins which can emanate from people, entertainments or places—or from the devil—is an enchanted, mystical, ancient Catholic view. Since the 1200’s the Tridentine Mass invoked St. Michael in the Confiteor as a protection against evil. Ours is a faith shot through with struggles between powers and principalities, angels and demons.

The resurgence in the St. Michael Prayer reclaims much of the domain seized by Freud, Jung, Adler and their redactors in outlining the landscape of the soul. And it rings true. We are not merely struggling to harness internal engines of the soul like the desires for sex, meaning and power. We are not merely hot-house orchids, isolated, hermetically sealed, gazing upon the tempests which rage within our spiritual navels. We are also the objects of a cosmic struggle between the forces of God and the Devil.

Scott Hahn explained the sign of the beast, 666, the mark of the devil referred to in Revelations, as the spiteful declaration of spiritual war by Satan. It was rooted in Satan’s offended pride and envy. According to St Thomas Aquinas, angels have perfect knowledge of that which they know, and at the instant of creation, saw all that would unfold throughout history, including the fall of man and the incarnation of God in the Person of Jesus Christ. According to Hahn, that God would become a lowly man was such an affront to the vastly superior angels that Satan rebelled in disgust, and 6, the day upon which man was created, was repeated as a cuss three times, as a mock of the Trinity and a declaration of rebellion. The fall of the angels was directly linked to their envy of man because God took on lowly humanity in the Person of Jesus Christ. So from the beginning, the principle objective of the fallen angels has been the seduction and ruin of human souls. According to Catholic theology we are hunted by the devil and his minions but also protected by hosts of angels, including angels specifically assigned to the protection of each one of us.

Now there is good reason to have pause. Most sane Catholics stiffen up at some point in the discussion of devils and angels. We live in an age of progress and practical solutions and the idea of an intractable struggle between invisible forces of good and evil seems pre-modern and nutty. And this is so among good Catholics who have closely adhered to the Church. In fact Vatican II officially suppressed the then widespread practice of praying the St. Michael prayer after Mass in the Instructio Prima. And the denuding of the churches of frescoes, statuary and all but the most abstract stained glass windows signaled a strong de-emphasis on the theology of powers and principalities. This has been the moment in the Church in which we have grown up. If one were to propose a spectrum extending from dismissal of the devil as a pre-scientific mythological representation of the psychologically and physically unexplained all the way over to a constant awareness of external forces both attacking and defending us, most of us would locate far closer to the former.

But in the past few years things have changed both among Church hierarchy and in the pews. In 1994 Pope John Paul II urged Catholics to recite the prayer again. And it has become increasingly evident to a growing number that abortion, pornography, same-sex “marriage” and no-fault divorce are not just isolated evils but part of a broad, concerted effort. Anthropologists accept it as axiomatic that we are religious by nature, always seeking to make sense of the meaning and purpose of our lives and creation. As these things have become more and more prevalent in our culture, their soul-transforming effects have given them a somewhat symbolic quality. It looks more and more like these evils are sacraments of darkness, rites aggressively promoted in a massive spiritual struggle for souls. Witness revelations of abortionist Kermit Gosnell’s practice of keep hundreds of tiny feet from the babies he killed in plastic bags in his freezer. More and more, ordinary Catholics think in terms of the ancient Catholic understanding of a cosmic struggle between good and evil, God and the devil.

At the April convocation of Our Lady Seat of Wisdom Academy in Barry’s Bay, Thomas Cardinal Collins gave the keynote address. He began with Chesterton’s observation that we love The Iliad because life is a struggle, we love The Odyssey because life is a journey, we love the Book of Job because so much of what befalls us is incomprehensible. To this he added a fourth; we love the Book of Revelations because we want to know how it all ends. He then said that we do know how it all ends—and these were the truest words he spoke that day.

If all the madness we face were merely phantasms in our tortured souls we could have no confidence in the triumph of God. From all the times we have made earnest resolutions and then fallen again, each of us knows that we can’t trust ourselves and so we know that we could not be certain that we would choose good over evil in the end if it were only up to us. The struggle between good and evil would be too much to bear if it were left up to us. We could have no confidence in how it all ends. But mercifully it is not only up to us.

After the cardinal had spoken, after the final blessing at the end of the convocation mass at St Hedwig’s church, several hundred voices and the cardinal recited the prayer to St. Michael. He then said that he had already printed up thousands of copies of the prayer and he planned to promulgate it in the archdiocese of Toronto as soon as opportunity allowed. As the storm gathers and the division between good and evil becomes more stark, the unfolding of history is providing that opportunity.

 

Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel

St. Michael the archangel defend us in battle
Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him we humbly pray, and do though o prince of the heavenly host
By the power of God cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl the world
seeking the ruin of souls.

Amen.

 

Editor’s note: This column first appeared in the November 2014 issue of Catholic Insight (Canada) and is reprinted with permission of the author.  The image above titled “St. Michael defeats the Devil” was painted by Eugene Delacroix.

Joe Bissonnette

By

Joe Bissonnette teaches religion and philosophy at Assumption College School in Brantford, Ontario where he lives with his wife and their seven children. He has written for Catholic Insight, The Human Life Review, The Interim, The Catholic Register and The Toronto Star.

  • Geo

    But isn’t the picture at the head of the article St. George?

    • Romulus

      It is. George is customarily depicted with curly hair. And Angels don’t ride horses.

  • Elizabeth C

    The Prayer to Saint Michael was not written in its earliest from in 1884 and its current from in 1902. That is when it was recited after mass. It has not been said “Since the 1200’s the Tridentine Mass invoked St. Michael in the Confiteor as a protection against evil” I do love that praying the St. Michael prayer is coming back into practice and the rest of the article.

    • Graytown

      Elizabeth

      I don’t think he was implying that the prayer was used since the 1200’s.
      But that St Michael was invoked in the Mass.

  • JohnE_o

    Scott Hahn explained the sign of the beast, 666, the mark of the devil
    referred to in Revelations, as the spiteful declaration of spiritual war
    by Satan. It was rooted in Satan’s offended pride and envy.

    With all due respect to Mr. Hahn, how would he know this to be true?

    My understanding is that 666 was an encrypted numerical reference to Nero.

    • James at large

      Actually 666 signifies Sodomy. Check out Book of Revelation 11 v 8.

      • “And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.” (Ap 11:8)

        In other words, it means sexual perversion and state usurpation of religion where Christ once reigned. The whole West stands guilty as charged.

  • Leonard

    Yes Geo but it’s the devil St. George is going after…fighting. God Bless

  • Harry

    If one believes in God at all, one believes there can be an incorporeal being with an intellect and will (assuming one’s theological understanding is beyond thinking of God as an old man with a long white beard). And if God is an incorporeal person then there also can be incorporeal angels with an intellect and a free will. And if angels really have a truly free will (which is necessary to be a person and not a robot-like thing) then it is no surprise that some angels misused it and became demons. All that makes sense.

    What is mysterious is that a spiritual being with an intellect and a free will — like an angel in those respects — would animate matter and not really be complete without the material body it animates. The existence of angels and demons makes far more sense than our own existence. So why do so many scoff at the notion of angels and demons? Because they don’t really believe in God. There really isn’t a good excuse for not believing in God:

    The anger of God is being revealed from heaven against all the impiety and depravity of men who keep truth imprisoned in their wickedness. For what can be known about God is perfectly plain to them since God himself has made it plain. Ever since God created the world his everlasting power and deity – however invisible – have been there for the mind to see in the things he has made. That is why such people are without excuse.
    — Romans 1:18-2

    If anyone says that the one, true God, our creator and lord, cannot be known with certainty from the things that have been made, by the natural light of human reason: let him be anathema.
    — Vatican Council I, can. 2 § I

    So what explains this denial of supernatural reality if it is so plain? Why are so many in so much darkness that they don’t even know they can’t see? That is the work of the Prince of this world. They scoff at the very notion of his existence — according to his plan.

    • Rob B.

      “The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.” 🙂

      • ColdStanding

        His second greatest trick is to get those that do acknowledge his existence to think that he is the author of evil.

        • Rob B.

          Well, in a certain sense, he is. As St. Thomas Aquinas put it:

          “I answer that, the devil is the occasional and indirect cause of all our sins, in so far as he induced the first man to sin, by reason of whose sin human nature is so infected, that we are all prone to sin: even as the burning of wood might be imputed to the man who dried the wood so as to make it easily inflammable.” (Summa Theologica, I of II, Q. 80, A. 4).

          • ColdStanding

            Ah, now I understand.

            It is because he, the devil, is the indirect cause of evil that God sent His only son. The devil robbed us of our relationship with God, hence the man beaten and robbed laying in his own blood at the side of the road that the Good Samaritan finds, however it was our going from Jerusalem down to Jericho that was the direct cause of our being robbed. We opened the door. It is our grievous fault. The devil has power to do evil to the degree that we enslave ourselves to him in preference to our service to God. We chose the creature over the creator.

            If we are robbed of our good, namely the existence given to us by God when He created us out of nothing, it can hardly be said that the one that robbed us of our good is the author of our not good. For if we are deprived what we were given we return to that from which we came, namely nothing. Even then, we can not be totally deprived of the good we are given because the devil can only deprive us of the completion of the work God willed to undertake on the immortal soul, he can not totally destroy the soul.

            “Or how can any one enter into the house of the strong, and rifle his goods, unless he first bind the strong? and then he will rifle his house.” (Mat. 12:29)

            Yikes, that’s a tough one.

            • Rob B.

              Ahh, but here is what Aquinas goes on to say in the same article:

              “He is not, however, the direct cause of all the sins of men, as though each were the result of his suggestion. Origen proves this (Peri Archon iii, 2) from the fact that even if the devil were no more, men would still have the desire for food, sexual pleasures and the like; which desire might be inordinate, unless it were subordinate to reason, a matter that is subject to the free-will.”

              In other words, the Devil’s temptation caused us to fall. Therefore, no Devil, no Fall. In this fashion he is “the author of sin.” However, we cannot take refuge in the statement “The devil made me do it.” We are indeed responsible for our own sins, even though the fact that we have an inclination towards sin is at least partially the fault of the Devil.

              • ColdStanding

                The inclination towards sin comes from our being made out of nothing and our not being made perfect. This is not a flaw in God’s plan for creation because nothing can be created perfect, else it would be God, in which case it could not be made because God always was, always is, and always will be.

                We are made for perfection, that is to be completed (future perfect tense), however, we are not yet completed. This vulnerability (woundableness, to coin a word) can be exploited (dragon waiting to snatch the child) to the degree we suffer pride (believing we have intrinsic good when in actuality all good comes from God).

                The holy (the whole) are invulnerable.

                • Rob B.

                  So are you saying we were made to fall? That without the Devil’s temptation, we would have fallen in some other manner? This is, I admit, an intriguing possibility. Where are you getting this from Scripture and the Magisterium?

                  • ColdStanding

                    Made to fall? Oh, no, that would suggest evil intention upon God’s part. An impossibility. It was by no means a given or a necessity that Adam would fall. I did say we are made for perfection. However, God’s glory and perfections are shown most excellently when His creations freely reciprocate His love.

                    Note the importance of Mary Most Holy’s “Fiat mihi secundum verbum tuum.” If her saying yes was so important it is partially because she was free to say no. Adam had all the grace he needed to say “no” to the fruit Eve offered him. Mary had all the grace to say yes. That’s free will.

                    Most of what I am talking about I have received from reading ++ Ullathorne. He got it from Catholic Tradition.

                    • Rob B.

                      OK, it looks like we are on the same page then. 🙂

                    • ColdStanding

                      Whew! Bullet dodged.

                    • Rob B.

                      Hardly, my friend. When dealing with complex issues like this, it pays to be sure everyone is clear… 🙂

              • Mike Koopman

                Is this Origen as in the passant as delivered by the oratory of Delueze? Or is this as the younger and sacerdotal Origen whose wits are still fully about his framework. Or, however it is that the existential and post-modern effect would be persuaded to accept the projection of his psyche from his latter and decayed writings? We all know that truth is only what we understand it to be, yah?

                • Rob B.

                  Will not compute. Abort, Retry, Fail? 🙂

                  Seriously, I have no idea what you are talking about. Sorry!

                  • Mike Koopman

                    I did a google search to help you on this, but you do peruse Psychologia for the latest in philosophical risings?

                    This seems a newsworthy note about the “fathers of psychobabble” as a household word, or, perhaps as a household internet appliance.

                    http://www.critical-theory.com/deleuze-guattari-biography/

                    Critical thinkers who believe it is necessary to leave a large gap between you and your “adversaries” often use tiny bread crumbs of context. One such breadcrumb is to highlight a Church Father upon whom “pop science” types will quickly rally. The Commies often did this, but then they usually waited until they recieved a “my good, good friends” letter to promote the particular gem of philosophical hype.

                    I must admit I follow this primarily because they were once a fine pair of my own… good, good friends. How does it go? With friends like these… help me out here … my memory is poor.

                    • Rob B.

                      Umm, OK. I must be rather stupid, because I still don’t get what you’re trying to say here.

                      Can you please describe what exactly you find questionable about my comments above about the Devil, preferably in plain English without reference to “the Commies?”

                    • Mike Koopman

                      I will try with due diligence, however, I find much difficulty in separating the Devil and Commies since they share so very much in common. I insinuated upon a denotation by contextual overarching with “tiny bread crumbs,” in reference to shared relationships of thematic personna especially. Do we not live in a world of communications where “avatar” and “meme” are ordinary language?

                      In this, Origen and “hierachical sacerdotal” are the key phrases that came glaringly predominate in my reading. These are not your words, but you appear to be a scholar of Origen and in this I thought I had made what I saw as an obvious sign, clearly signified. You did not appear to note the signifier I had thought was presented with enough stress.

                      The implication of Origen under the undue stress of “hierarchical sacerdotal” in the “PS:” of the top level comment under which your comment is included: of note; of All Believers” kind but the real hierarchical sacerdotal priests as the prayers are associated with exorcisms.

                      Please also note the string pattern of word expressions in the original article, “when you say dog, cat, house, person, good, true and beautiful.” This is rhetorical in the way of beauty, and this rhetoric is emphasized by the author. Although, the “dog-cat” before “domestic church,” or “frame dwelling (cf., Loreto),” is likely to evoke early “MTV” cartoon caricatures.

                      In this, the immediate level of concern is evidently minor and the heaviside evalutes to a glancing remark regarding Hebb, D.O., The Organization of Behavior, New York, Wiley, 1949. I suggest, however, you find a good critical review of the previous reference unless you really like to bleed your ears with exceedingly dry discourse; bone gnashing dry discourse.

                      Finally, after excrutiating pains to “deconstruct” a few critical elements that educed my belief in a pattern of rhetoric I will try to form the hypothesis upon your, true and faithful to magisterial teaching, comment upon The Light Bearer, Satan. Please take note of the unusual construction of the following, “it can hardly be said that the one that robbed us of our good is the author of our not good.” This is a Spinoza declination from a writer who appears not to prefer such denotatives in the absence of explicit representation. Actually, it includes the antithetic element explicitly. The greater part is that I intended to inform you that a veil of untruth was being evinced and that belief in Satan was being identified as a sign of “weak brains,” to put it quite simply.

                      I always wonder how modernists can swallow the leaven of the Pharisees and see the “wide path” of the new and true Christians. How do we reject the Presentation and then come to know Christ? How do we reject supernatural, angels and then believe that Christ is True God. I can not see how it is possible. I hope this sheds a bit of light on what my comment was meant to project.

                      I do prefer to make short of these things. But you appeared to insist upon a formal construction.

                    • Rob B.

                      OK, I give up, man! You win! 🙂

    • I don’t think we are ‘spirit’ animating matter. Rather, the soul and the body are one thing, or one substance (in the way that a table and the wood that makes the table are one thing or one substance).

      • Harry

        Hello, English Catholic,

        I said a human spirit would “not really be complete without the material body it animates.” A soul and a body are not the same thing, but the two are united in one person. Divinity and humanity are not the same thing, but the two are united in one person in Christ,

        • Mike Koopman

          Wow, how clever? Just like “cat-dog?” Where would that leave Dog-boy? It is concupiscence that leads us to admire Nursey Wursy. Oh, for the good, old days of early MTV. …. Nah.

  • St JD George

    My preference would be to have St George riding his tractor slaying evil groundhogs destroying property (ha). This article resonates with me because the church I completed RCIA in was St Michael’s and my confirmation name was St George. Having said that, I was confused why the picture was chosen for the article. I haven’t said that prayer since I left St Michael, but I would welcome hearing it more often.

    • ColdStanding

      Dude, do a search already. St George & the dragon.

      • St JD George

        I thought Joe was enlightening us about the resurgence of the St Michael prayer, in Latin or in English as you prefer.

        • ColdStanding

          “Having said that, I was confused why the picture was chosen for the article.”

          Joe doesn’t pick the pictures. It is a picture of St. George slaying the dragon….. Arg! Now I get it. St. George is not St. Michael the Archangel.

          Let’s not bicker about who killed who.

          • St JD George

            No bicker, others noted as well. I like both and don’t mind the inclusiveness even if accidental.

            • MrRightWingDave

              I’m pretty sure that the art work above is a depiction of St. Michael slaying the Devil.

              • ColdStanding

                It is now. They changed it.

                • MrRightWingDave

                  Oh!

          • Mark Mills

            You’re not gonna do a song while I’m here.

            • ColdStanding

              I am feeling much better.

              • Rob B.

                You’re not fooling anyone, you know… 🙂

  • ColdStanding

    The devil hates Latin. Wait a minute! Don’t some of you hate Latin? I’m sure it is just a co-incidence. Moving on.

    If you are going to pray it (and you should), do it right:

    Sáncte Míchael Archángele, defénde nos in proélio, cóntra nequítiam et insídias diáboli ésto præsídium. Ímperet ílli Déus, súpplices deprecámur: tuque, prínceps milítiæ cæléstis, Sátanam aliósque spíritus malígnos, qui ad perditiónem animárum pervagántur in múndo, divína virtúte, in inférnum detrúde. Ámen

    Stop looking for loop holes. Pray in a way that makes you suffer. I’ve had a heck of a time getting the tongue to pronounce the “prínceps milítiæ cæléstis” part. I vow by the end of this day to conquer it!

    PS: Some of these prayers are meant to be said by priests. Not the Catholic Action “Priesthood of All Believers” kind but the real hierarchical sacerdotal priests as the prayers are associated with exorcisms.

    PPS: Add a daily Our Father in honor of your guardian angel. The Our Father is for sinners, so you are not helping him to relieve his sins, you are helping him by expiating your sins.

    • Martha

      You rock, coldstanding. You’re right; it should be more efficacious in Latin! That is going to be the next Latin prayer on our list to learn. It’s amazing what kids can learn when they’re racing each other to see who can do it first!

    • JohnnyCuredents

      Thanks, CS. I intended to look up the Latin wording as soon as I finished reading the article. Then I tarried a bit and decided to read the comments to see how they differed from or paralleled my own thoughts. And then I came across your comment…. I want to echo your words and suggest that everyone learn to pray most parts of the Mass and the entire Rosary in Latin. I did years ago and I’ve never regretted the effort. There are some prayers I actually know better in Latin than in English, the Salve Regina, for example, but for some reason I never learned this prayer to St Michael, a lacuna I plan to remedy today. Thanks again.

      • musicacre

        Interesting, because that is the main prayer all my children know like the back of their hand, (Salve Regina) but I wonder if it’s because we sing it. We seem to remember everything we sing!

    • musicacre

      Maybe you could add that harder part in phonetics. We have a prayer card on the table of Latin grace, both in Latin and phonetics just under each word….mind you most of the time we forget to say grace in Latin! Intentions always need to be re-dedicated!! Grace is a good time to add another prayer also!

      • ColdStanding

        I’ve tried several fancy techniques for memorization. Nothing beats repetition, even if I have to go slow. I’ve found for prayers, maybe because it is already visually divided, are most readily retained in the memory by reading the line, looking away repeating the line, moving to the next line reading & repeating (no looking!), then reading the first line and second line, looking away and repeating both lines until the whole thing is retained. Most important, this really gets it planted, is to pray it often after working to memorize it. That’s the point isn’t it? You want that treasure in your piggy bank to take out and mull over as you like or need.

        Most amazingly, the kids are now automatic in memorization. Now that they know to expect me to have them remember it their young minds (very jealous!) soak it up almost without work.

        Thanks for the tip on using a phonetic rendering.

    • Ray McCracken

      I thought the devil loved Latin, it was the language of those that murdered Jesus. Also, you can be sure that you have created your own image of the devil if he hates exactly the things that you love.

  • 1ray1

    Thanks for writing on this topic. We should all do a quick search on Leonine Prayer and read about what comes up. It will explain the history of these prayers being said after Mass in our beleaguered Church. I’m all for saying them enmasse as the Body of Christ after each Holy Sacrifice of the Mass said worldwide. It would be a start and could be the unifying symbol needed to bring us all together(at least a beginning).

  • St JD George

    Yes indeed, “even philosophers must eat, sleep and conduct themselves in civil society”, and earn a living. I must be a simpleton Joe because I can see the prince of darkness handiwork seemingly everywhere these days, or at least a growing influence.

  • Rob B.

    My children love the Prayer to St. Michael. Of course, it helps that one of them is named Michael… 🙂

    • musicacre

      Same here. We have two Michaels; my husband and eldest son. I was born on the day of dedication to St. Michael….(Sept. 29th)

  • Mariza Swierz

    A common error: it is the “Book of Revelation”, not the “Book of Revelations”.

    • St JD George

      In fairness, there was more than “one” (ha).

    • zoltan

      I thought it was Apocalypse?

      • Michael Paterson-Seymour

        Ἀποκάλυψις is simply Greek for Revelation, literally “uncovering.”

        • zoltan

          Thank you for your erudition!

    • stpetric

      Yes–it’s a little thing, I know, but that stuck out at me, too!

  • Jack

    Why did this article being with a painting of St. George if the article is about St. Michael?

    And for those who were mistaken, the St. Michael prayer (and I’m saying nothing about it) was NEVER part of the Mass.

    • zoltan

      I thought it was said at the end of every Low Mass from the late nineteenth century up until the 2nd Vatican Council? The traditional low masses I attend always have it.

      • The Mass ends after the final blessing and dismissal of the faithful. The prayer to St. Michael was said then and is said now after the end of the Mass, ergo it was not and is not part of the Mass.

        • zoltan

          Thank you for clarifying.

    • DD

      Your correct…it was never PART of the mass. It was said as the priest was at the steps of the sanctuary….the mass was over but everyone was still in their pews and it was sort of like a closing hymn and in some places after that a hymn was sung.

    • Crisiseditor

      Thank you for the correction. The painting was misidentified. Eugene Delacroix’s depiction was the only painting of St. Michael I could find with the right dimensions. Hope you enjoy it.

      • Rob B.

        Both images were nice, though this one is more appropriate. 🙂

        • Crisiseditor

          I use it. It’s a good site.

  • pbecke

    What a brilliant idea! I’m a great admirer of Vatican II. Even its written teachings seem so beautifully written, at least in English, that even that seems divinely inspired.

    However, I’m horrified that the prayer of St Michael was proscribed and ‘only the most abstract stained-glass windows’ permitted.

    The deepest truths, from the Holy Trinity down, are ultrapersonal, not abstract. David doesn’t say in Psalm 89: ‘you walk in the presence of love and truth’ (Lord), but ‘love and truth walk in your presence.’

    • Malvin Ooi

      And idols. …….
      Bags…..to collect $$$$…..
      Still lost in Vatican. ……

      Many will not make it.

  • Jeanne Marie

    Indeed!!! THANK YOU for this topic! Our Parish As Cyril & Methodius in Sterling Hts, MI recite this after EVERY MASS. It’s comforting to know others join in understanding our current predicament in the world, our times and what our REAL BATTLE is. Principalities and Power’s.

    God Bless

  • Just a small quibble, but I’d say it’s mistaken to include Karl Jung among those trying to “seize domain” from St Michael the Archangel. Although Jung was far from an orthodox Christian, he always sought very especially to discover, to learn from, and to work with each and every single one of the differing iconic powers handed down to us by tradition.

  • I can’t recommend highly enough Fr Chad Ripperger’s talks on this topic. Search for his page ‘Sensus Traditionis’. He’s an exorcist and he’s seen it all. He’s also thoroughly orthodox (former teacher at the FSSP seminary).

  • CharlesOConnell

    I prayed this past week for a composer to render this prayer into plain song.

  • Dastardly

    We’ve been praying the powerful St Michael prayer at the end of our early morning Sunday Mass for at least 5 years now, Holy Trinity Parish, Gainesville, VA.

  • JimBob
  • spoofty

    Great editing! “Devil sand angels”? I have a vacuum called a “dirt devil” but not a “sand devil”

  • kim

    We say the Prayer to St Michael during each Mass. I believe Bishop Paprocki brought it back for us. I never knew it before we started saying it at Mass…sad to say!

  • Luis

    Does the devil want my soul because am American or mexican? Because I speak English or Spanish?
    A prayer regardless of language is a prayer. When confronted, there is only one LORD, Jesus Christ.

  • Barbara McAtee

    You know how the mechanic’s car is always up on blocks? How the plumber’s sink is always backed up? Well, I’ve been a catechist for decades, even on the (arch)diocesan level and none of my 3 beautiful children go to church. However, the strange thing is, they DO pray, the rosary, other memorized prayers, AND they LOVE the prayer to St. Michael! My girls have even spoken about having a sword superimposed on a shield tattooed on a shoulder blade, along with the prayer to St. Michael – in LATIN! I’ve got weird kids! So the prayer to St. Michael slices through the darkness again! (Of course, they can’t afford such an elaborate tattoo, so I gave one a St. Michael statue and said, “Just pray the prayer everyday!” It’s much less expensive!)

    • Rob B.

      Oh St. Monica, you whose prayers brought your son to the Truth, please help Barbara’s children to return to the fullness of their faith.

      • Barbara

        Thanks for the prayers, Rob!

  • mickakers

    Thank God for Vatican II and the vernacular. The prayer to Saint Michael (my patron saint) was only prayed liturgical speaking after Low Mass and interesting enough, it was prayed in the vernacular, English for our purposes. I grew up with the Tridentine Mass, was a Master Of Ceremonies to a Papal Chamberlain (Rt. Rev. Msgr.) and a Cantor in Liturgical services, all in Latin. The majority of the congregation did not have the faintest idea what was going on, they were praying their rosaries. Vatican II did not suppress the saying of the prayer to Saint Michael. I find this article inaccurate and immature.

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