Today is the Feast of the Guardian Angels, and I’d like to honor my angel and those of my family members by sharing a few encounters we’ve had with them over the years. These happenings weren’t obviously miraculous, but there was always a sense of mystery surrounding them. We didn’t always know the people we met were angels right away, but the circumstances surrounding the events were just too peculiar to come to any other conclusion. The following accounts show how simple and unassuming angels can be. They never said too much they just got right to the point. It is good to be reminded of how attentive angels are to our needs and how diligently they watch over and protect us in this life.
The first meeting happened years ago after I left morning Mass. I was in my car waiting to turn left on a busy street. There were shops along the road, so there were wide sidewalks for people to walk safely. As I sat at the stop sign, a woman caught my attention. She was running down the sidewalk waving her arms and yelling. I couldn’t hear what she was saying because she was so far away. I wasn’t sure if she was calling out to me or someone else, but she seemed to be looking right at me, so I waited for her. Once she reached me, she ran right up to my car window and told me she needed to get to the post office right away to send her daughter a telegram. I told her I would take her, but I didn’t know where the post office was. She told me it was only a few blocks down, which made me wonder why she needed a ride. She could have been there in a few minutes. When I got there, I parked and told her I would wait and take her home. She thanked me but told me she’d get home on her own. So I left, and that’s when I realized she didn’t have anything with her, no purse, no keys, nothing. It was very strange. I thought about this encounter throughout the day, and I believe I met my angel in human form most likely to prevent an accident.
“Do not neglect to show hospitality, for by that means some have entertained angels, without knowing it.”Hebrews 13:2
The next angel encounter was similar. I got in my car to run to Walmart one day, and when I pulled onto the main road in our neighborhood there was a long line of cars waiting at the stop sign. There have never been more than two cars at that stop sign in all the years I’ve lived here. Once again, I noticed a woman walking along the sidewalk. She had yellow poofy hair, which made her stand out. When she got closer to my car, she walked up to my passenger door, poked her head in the window, and asked me if I could take her to Walmart. I thought it was strange that she passed all the other cars by and came right to mine. But I told her I was going there so I would take her. We chatted for a few minutes on the way to the store, and when we got there I mentioned I’d wait for her, but she said no. I told her it wouldn’t be a problem, and we went our separate ways. I finished shopping and started to look for her. I searched the whole store, but she was nowhere to be found. I paid for my groceries and saw that it was pouring down rain outside, so I waited by the door for her for about a half-hour. She never showed up, so I went home. It didn’t take me long to ponder whether she was an angel. The whole thing was just too odd. I think that meeting was also to prevent a car accident.
“Are they not all ministering spirits, sent to serve those who are to inherit eternal salvation?”Hebrews 1:14
Another account happened several years ago while we were on a family vacation in Yosemite National Park in California. It was a hot July day and we set out on a hike. After an hour or so, my husband and son went ahead of my daughter and me. We hiked alone for a long time and eventually ran out of water. I knew my husband wasn’t coming back until they made it to the summit, so I wondered how I was going to find water for us. A short time later, we came upon a large open area. I saw a man and woman hiking down some wooden stairs pretty far away from us. As we got closer to them, the man looked at me and pointed toward a thin stream of water running down the mountainside. He said, “That water is flowing. You can drink it.” I wondered how he knew we needed water? I thanked him, and we exchanged a few words, then they were on their way. We went over and got a drink, and I can honestly say that was the best water I ever drank. It was so cold and pure. It tasted wonderful. My daughter and I sat down to rest and have a bit to eat. Then we refilled our water bottles and were on our way. That was pretty amazing when you think about it. We hiked for seven hours that day, and without that water, we would have been in deep trouble.
“For to his angels he has given command about you, that they guard you in all your ways. Upon their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone.”Psalm 91:11-12
I have one more angel encounter that took place while my family and I were on vacation in Breckenridge, Colorado. We were hiking one day when some clouds rolled in. It was getting kind of dark, and it was clear a storm was coming. It is common for it to rain or storm in the afternoons in the mountains, so we knew we needed to head back, and that was going to take a while. About an hour later, we came to an area on the path that I remembered. One trail led deeper into the mountain toward the water, which I knew was the wrong way. The other trail moved away from the water. That was what we needed to do, but my family wouldn’t listen to me and insisted on going toward the water. At that point, I noticed three people. An older man was leaning against a tree holding an umbrella, which was crazy because of the potential lightning from the storm. A younger man stood next to him, and then there was a woman sitting on the ground which didn’t make sense since it was raining. They were all so still and just stared at us. Then the woman pointed to the trail leading away from the water and said, “This is the right path.” I thanked them, and everyone turned around, and we were on our way. I told my daughter they were angels and she said, “Yes, and the woman was my angel.” It doesn’t matter whether she was my daughter’s angel or not. It is just nice to know that our guardian angels are always there and will even come in the form of a human person to guide and protect us.
The following prayers are from the book Saint Michael and the Angels.
Memorare to Our Guardian Angel
Remember O holy Angel, that Jesus, the eternal Truth, assures us you “rejoice more at the conversion of one sinner than at the perseverance of many just.” Encouraged thereby, I, the last of creatures, humbly entreat you to receive me as your child and make me unto you a cause of true joy. Do not, O blessed Spirit, reject my petition, but graciously hear and grant it. Amen
Aspiration to Our Guardian Angel
O my dear Angel Guardian, preserve me from the misfortune of offending God.
Prayer to Our Guardian Angel
O Angel! who by God’s goodness has charge over me, who assists me in my necessities, who consoles me in my troubles, who obtains for me continually new favors, I thank you most sincerely, Gently Guardian, continue your charitable care; defend me against my enemies, put away from me all occasions of sin, make me obedient to your inspirations and faithful to follow them, especially in my present difficulty (here mention your request). In the presence of Jesus Christ and the whole court of Heaven, I choose you for my protector, my defender, my guide, and my advocate. I beg you to govern my whole life: my memory, understanding, will, inclinations, and desires. O Holy Angel, I love you and wish to love you always. A thousand times I bless the Lord for the heavenly gifts with which He has adorned you, for the graces with which He has sanctified you, and for the glory with which He has crowned you. Guard and guide me now and at the hour of my death. Never leave me unprotected until you have brought me safe to Heaven. Amen
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