Saints of the Day – 2 October – The Holy Guardian Angels
The Twelve Works of our Guardian Angel
By St Bonaventure of Bagnoregio OFM (1217-1274)
Confessor, Cardinal Bishop of Albano, Theologian,
Franciscan Minister General
Doctor of the Church
According to Sacred Scripture
there are twelve works of charity
which our guardian Angel does for us.
THE FIRST is to rebuke us for our faults. According to the Book of Judges, Chapter 2, verse 1 – The Angel of the Lord ascends from Galgala to the place of those weeping and says: “I have led you forth from the land of Egypt . . . And you have not heard my voice.“
THE SECOND is to absolve us from the bonds of our sins. According to Book of Acts, Chapter 12, verse 7 – The Angel stood by . . . and the chains fell from his hands; yet this must be understood as disposing this to happen.
THE THIRD is to take away from us, those things impeding our progress in goodness, which is signified in the Book of Exodus, Chapter 12, verse 12 – where the Angel struck the first born of Egypt.
THE FOURTH is to constrain those demons afflicting us, according to the Book of Tobias, Chapter 12, verse 3 – “He chased the demon from my wife,” says Tobias of the Archangel St. Raphael.
THE FIFTH is to teach us, according to the Book of Daniel, Chapter 9, verse 22: – Now I have entered, to teach you and so that you might understand.
THE SIXTH is to reveal secrets, for according to the Book of Genesis, Chapter 18, verse 17 – the three Angels expressed the Mystery of the Trinity and Unity, after which God said: Can I conceal from Abraham what I am about to do?
THE SEVENTH is to console, according to the Book of Tobias, Chapter 5, verse 13 – Be of a strong spirit, it is nigh, that you are to be cured by God etc..
THE EIGHTH is to comfort us on the way to God, according to Third Book of Kings, Chapter 19, verse 7 – Rise and eat, for a grand way remains for you.
THE NINTH is to lead us forth on this way and to conduct us back to God, according to the Book of Tobias, Chapter 5, verse 15 – I shall lead and I shall lead him back etc..
THE TENTH is to cast down our enemies, according to the Book of Isaiah, Chapter 37, verse 36 – Having entered, the Angel of the Lord struck upon the camps of the Assyrians etc..
THE ELEVENTH to mitigate our temptations; and this is signified in the Book of Genesis, Chapter 32, verse 24 – where Jacob wrestled with the Angel and was comforted after the match, having accepted his blessing, the nerve of his femur withered up.
THE TWELFTH is to pray for us and to carry our prayers to God, according to the Book of Tobias, Chapter 12, verse 12 – When you were praying with tears . . . I offered your prayer etc.. All of these are the effects of our Guardian Angel’s care of us, on account of which, we ought to be submissive and grateful both to God and the Holy Angels.