The Work of Heaven & Earth

I’m reading a book called Interview with an Exorcist by Fr. Jose Antonio Fortea.  It is clear, easy to read and understand.  I think he also beautifully sums up why we as Catholics love Mary, the saints, angels, and our moms.

On page 68 he is answering the question of how we can protect ourselves from demonic attack.  Here is one of his paragraphs which not only reminds us of the role of angels, saints and Mary, but a duty and privilege of all mothers:

“Of course, before performing any work or facing a specific danger relating to the demonic field, the invocation of St. Michael the Archangel is highly effective.  He always comes to our aid and protects us if we call on him with faith.  Even though St. Michael has received a special charge from God with respect to demons, one can also call upon his or her own guardian angel, another saint, or God directly for protection.  Fortunately, there are mothers and grandmothers who pray to God every day for the spiritual protection of their children and grandchildren.  As the mission of the Mother of God is to pray for the whole Church, so the mission of these faithful women is to pray for their families.”

One of the things I struggled with when it came to praying to anyone but God was the idea that somehow praying to anyone but God was to take from Him the honor due to Him alone.  Somewhere along the way it was pointed out to me the difference between honor and worship as well as a challenge to consider the generosity of God.

God is not stingy.  He’s not insulted when one of His creatures is honored because they have fulfilled or demonstrated His mercy and grace in their lives.  Remember in the Narnia series when only Lucy could see Aslan at times?  Not everyone could handle meeting Aslan directly.  Sometimes it was a test for the person, but sometimes they simply weren’t ready.  (And some, like the dwarves in the last book, perhaps never were.)  God wants to touch our lives, but since we cannot handle a “direct” touch He often uses His creation and creatures to draw us to Himself. My personal opinion is that any mother who dies with young children still at home is most likely given the task of watching over them personally from Heaven.  Same with dads.  We don’t go to Heaven to sit on a cloud and strum a harp.  We go to worship and love God and work with Him to bring the world to salvation.  God is generous in using His saints to help bring others to Himself.  To call upon them does not lessen His glory (impossible anyway), but to demonstrate His outrageous goodness, mercy and generosity.

Saint Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil.  May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all the other evil spirits who prowl about the earth seeking the ruin of souls.  Amen.

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