Prayer of the Servant of God Luisa Piccarreta, the Little Daughter of the Divine Will at the beginning of Volume One in “The Book of Heaven”:
Most Holy Virgin, lovable Mother, come to my aid, obtain for me from your sweet Jesus and mine, grace and strength in order to do this obedience (write the Volumes). Saint Joseph, my dear protector, assist me in this circumstance of mine. Archangel Saint Michael, defend me from the infernal enemy, who puts so many obstacles in my mind to make me fail this obedience. Archangel Saint Rafael and you, my guardian Angel, come to assist me and accompany me, and to direct my hand, that I may write nothing but the truth.
May everything be for the honor and glory of God
The Sacred Scriptures have revealed the proper names of only three Angels, all of whom belong to the Choir of the Archangels. The names are well known to all, namely: Michael, Gabriel, Raphael. Ancient apocryphal literature of the Old Testament contains several other names of Archangels in addition to the three just mentioned. Like the sources themselves, these other names are spurious. Names like Uriel, Raguel, Sariel, and Jeremiel are not found in the canonical books of Sacred Scripture, but in the apocryphal book of Enoch, fourth book of Esdras, and in rabbinical literature. The Church does not permit proper names of Angels that are not found in the canonical books of the Bible. All such names that were taken from apocryphal writings were rejected under Pope Zachary, in 745. There must have been danger of serious abuses in this regard during that century.
The Church honors the archangels, invokes their intercession and relies on their assistance in the spiritual warfare we daily face. In Hebrew, “Michael” means “Who is like God?” Saint Michael is mentioned four times in Scripture: Daniel 10 and 12, in Jude and in Revelation. Scripture reveals to us that Saint Michael is known as the “Prince of the Heavenly Host,” hence, the leader of all angels. It is to the Prince of the Heavenly that we owe a debt of gratitude for casting down to Hell Lucifer and the evil spirits; he is invoked for protection against Satan and all evil.
Sacred Tradition teaches that there are four offices connected to Saint Michael:
to fight against Satan, his minions and the power of evil
to rescue and protect the faithful from evil, especially at the hour of death
to lead the people of God to full communion with God Himself
to call our souls to judgment before God.
We know the archangel from his announcement of the dawn of salvation to Mary: “I am Gabriel, who stand before God” (Luke 1:19). What is crucial to remember about Gabriel are his two announcements in the New Testament: the birth of John the Baptist to his father Zachary and of the Incarnation, the Word made flesh in Mary. Saint Gabriel, whose name means “God’s strength,” is also mentioned four times in Scripture. Again, sacred Tradition tells us that it is Saint Gabriel who appeared to Saint Joseph and to the shepherds. At the beginning of the Passion it was Gabriel who “strengthens” Jesus in the his agony of the garden.
“I am the angel Raphael, one of the seven, who stand before the Lord” (Tobit 12:15) Saint Raphael, whose name means “God has healed” because of his healing of Tobias’ blindness in the Book of Tobit. This book in the Old Testament is the only book in which Raphael is mentioned. He is the archangel of healing and acts of mercy. Tradition tells us that Saint Raphael is the angel in John 5:1-4 who descended upon the pond and bestowed healing powers upon it so that the first to enter it after it moved would be healed of whatever infirmity he was suffering.
Those familiar with what is called the “old Mass” will remember praying the Prayer to Saint Michael at the conclusion of Mass. In 1899, after a vision of evil, Pope Leo XIII wanted to protect the Church and instructed that his prayer be prayed by all, especially the priest. I can’t recommend the prayer enough to you when making your thanksgiving following Mass or the Divine Office. Plus, I would recommend that you pray the Prayer to Saint Michael prior to going to bed. Saints Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, pray for us.
The three Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael
are the only Angels named in Sacred Scripture.
The Servant of God, Luisa Piccarreta the Little Daughter of the Divine Will, had a great love and respect for the Angels, evidenced by her prayer written when she was given the obedience to write her spiritual diary.
Thus Luisa begins Volume One in the “Book of Heaven, The Call of the Creature to the Order, the Place and the Purpose for which He was Created by God“:
In the name of the Father, of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Out of pure obedience, I begin to write.
You know, O Lord!, the sacrifice it costs me, such that I would submit myself to a thousand deaths rather than write one single line of the things that have passed between me and You. Oh my God!, my nature trembles, it feels crushed and almost undone at the mere thought of it. O please!, give me strength, oh Life of my life, that I may do the holy obedience! . . .
. . . Most Holy Virgin, lovable Mother (The Blessed Mother), come to my aid, obtain for me from Your sweet Jesus and mine, grace and strength in order to do this obedience. Saint Joseph, my dear protector, assist me in this circumstance of mine. Archangel Saint Michael, defend me from the infernal enemy, who puts so many obstacles in my mind to make me fail this obedience. Archangel Saint Rafael and you, my Guardian Angel, come to assist me and accompany me, and to direct my hand, that I may write nothing but the truth. . . .
[resources: St. Michael and the Archangels and St. Michael Novena and Prayers]
The Chaplet of St. Michael is a wonderful way to honor this great Archangel along with the other nine Choirs of Angels. What do we mean by Choirs? It seems that God has created various orders of Angels. Sacred Scripture distinguishes nine such groupings: Seraphim, Cherubim, Thrones, Dominations, Powers, Virtues, Principalities, Archangels and Angels (Isa. 6:2; Gen. 3:24; Col. 1:16; Eph. 1:21; Rom. 8:38). There may be more groupings but these are the only ones that have been revealed to us. The Seraphim is believed to be the highest Choir, the most intimately united to God, while the Angelic Choir is the lowest.
The history of this Chaplet goes back to a devout Servant of God, Antonia d’Astonac, who had a vision of St. Michael. He told Antonia to honor him by nine salutations to the nine Choirs of Angels. St. Michael promised that whoever would practice this devotion in his honor would have, when approaching Holy Communion, an escort of nine angels chosen from each of the nine Choirs. In addition, for those who would recite the Chaplet daily, he promised his continual assistance and that of all the holy angels during life, and after death deliverance from purgatory for themselves and their relations.
The Chaplet of St. Michael
O God, come to my assistance. O Lord, make haste to help me. Glory be to the Father, etc.
[Say one Our Father and three Hail Marys after each of the following nine salutations in honor of the nine Choirs of Angels]
1. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Seraphim may the Lord make us worthy to burn with the fire of perfect charity.
2. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Cherubim may the Lord grant us the grace to leave the ways of sin and run in the paths of Christian perfection.
3. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Thrones may the Lord infuse into our hearts a true and sincere spirit of humility.
4. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Dominations may the Lord give us grace to govern our senses and overcome any unruly passions.
5. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Virtues may the Lord preserve us from evil and falling into temptation. Amen.
6. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Powers may the Lord protect our souls against the snares and temptations of the devil.
7. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Principalities may God fill our souls with a true spirit of obedience. Amen.
8. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Archangels may the Lord give us perseverance in faith and in all good works in order that we may attain the glory of Heaven.
9. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Angels may the Lord grant us to be protected by them in this mortal life and conducted in the life to come to Heaven.
Say one Our Father in honor of each of the following leading Angels: St. Michael, St. Gabriel, St. Raphael and our Guardian Angel.
O glorious prince St. Michael, chief and commander of the heavenly hosts, guardian of souls, vanquisher of rebel spirits, servant in the house of the Divine King and our admirable conductor, you who shine with excellence and superhuman virtue deliver us from all evil, who turn to you with confidence and enable us by your gracious protection to serve God more and more faithfully every day.
Pray for us, O glorious St. Michael, Prince of the Church of Jesus Christ, that we may be made worthy of His promises.
Almighty and Everlasting God, Who, by a prodigy of goodness and a merciful desire for the salvation of all men, has appointed the most glorious Archangel St. Michael Prince of Your Church, make us worthy, we ask You, to be delivered from all our enemies, that none of them may harass us at the hour of death, but that we may be conducted by him into Your Presence.This we ask through the merits of
Jesus Christ Our Lord.