‘The Holy Angels are images of God’s holiness and righteousness,’ Patriarch Daniel says

In his homily delivered Wednesday on the feast of Saints Michael and Gabriel Archangels, Romanian Patriarch Daniel noted that the holy angels reflect God’s glory and proclaim it to humans. His Beatitude added that the angels are images of God’s holiness, righteousness, and kindness.

The Patriarch of the Romanian Orthodox Church referred to Christian life saying that it often represents a fight with the evil spirits. In his wish to perform good, the patriarch said, man is often helped by the holy angels.

The patriarch went on to speak about the heavenly powers who were created for the communion with God. He also referred to Lucifer, the first angel who fell from the glory he was granted because of his pride.

Lucifer was so beauteous in his glory that he fell in love with his own beauty. He became proud of his light and intelligence. This self-pride made him want to be like the Creator. For this reason, he lost his light and separated himself from God the Creator, the patriarch said.

Patriarch Daniel pointed to the nine angelic choirs: Seraphim, Cherubim, Thrones, Dominions, Virtues, Powers, Principalities, Archangels, and Angels. His Beatitude explained that the orders of the heavenly powers are in accordance with each group’s state of light and holiness.

The differentiated spiritual states of the holy angels show us that holiness is gradually acquired. Seraphim have this privilege given by God to be closest to Him. In turn, they must convey the gifts received with the following angelic choirs. This demonstrates that the heavenly hierarchy is the hierarchy of sharing and giving, the Romanian Patriarch said.

Principalities, Archangels, and Angels, the patriarch added, are the spiritual beings closest to humans. Among the Archangels, the Holy Fathers distinguished seven names: Michael, Gabriel, Raphael, Uriel, Selaphiel, Jehudiel, Barachiel. They all have God-bearing names. They proclaim the presence and the work of God’s grace for the salvation of humans.

The most well-known archangels are Michael and Gabriel. In the Akathist hymn to the Holy Archangels, the patriarch noted, Michael is called a servant of the Law, while Gabriel is called an angel of grace.

At the end of his sermon, Patriarch Daniel noted that over one million Romanians bear the names of the Holy Archangels and congratulated them on their name day.

His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel offered his reflections on the feast of the Holy Archangels during the Divine Liturgy celebrated at St Gregory the Enlightener Chapel of his patriarchal residence on Nov. 8.

Photography: ZL

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