Friday, September 28, 2012

The Archangels We Need


More Archangels! The first time I wrote about these angels I was still in graduate school and trying to make my way through a day of observation as an assistant in a Catholic High School.  Now, I am back to teaching full time but still calling upon the help of these Archangels to make it through our day.

We celebrated the feast and our Sword wielding namesake a day early with our monks, students, staff, and the Archbishop.  The chapel was filled to the brim with 220 boys (still slightly grumpy with being forced into the full dress code a whole day early) plus teachers, staff, and a few parents. 

They did pretty well, our boys, there were a few strays; one senior leaned his head back against a column behind his chair.  It would've looked like he was thinking, except his mouth drooped open a little bit.  A junior fought sleep bravely, but his head kept bobbing clearly showed sleep winning...even with his dean next to him.  I swept behind the row to gently thwack this slouched and snoozing kiddo with my 'liturgy aid' and just kept moving.  His head popped back up with a startled look; I smiled to show no malice, disturbing his sleep was enough.  Trussed up in their button-down shirts, ties, and dress junior forgot his socks. Sadly for him, I had been celebrating Dress Code Demerit Week and the lack of socks became his first demerit of the year.  Harsh?  No, correction of the sleepy and the sloven was done with a smile, a reminder, and a humor-filled-hope that it won't happen again.

The boys also joined in the praises of this day, "In the sight of the angels I will sing your praises, Lord" Responsorial Psalm.  The students proclaimed the Word, assisted in distributing the Eucharist, and participated fairly well.  A choir of men's and boys voices held together pretty well in responses and rang out a little off key, but strong with song.  Those moments are always the most profound for me.  After growing up with only sisters and little church that was mostly women, joining a monastery (ahem, all women), and teaching at a co-ed school where the young ladies did most of the proclaiming and I am surrounded by deep conviction of tenors and basses.  Participation is the norm; even if it's half-hearted, the combined effect is outstanding and it warms my heart.

So I pray for my boys...may Michael will defend them, may Raphael guide and heal them, and may Gabriel herald God's Will for their way.  We don't see them, we don't always think of them, but these angels of power are needed in all our lives. 


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