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Monday, September 28, 2009

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Blake Helgoth

I know that it is matter that differentiates one man from another, but can you tell me what it is that differentiates the angels? I used to know, but I have forgotten. It came up when talking to my son about the Trinity.

Blake Helgoth

More specifics on my previous post: I do know that the angels differ in genus, that is, each angle is its own genus. Thus, the angels are as different from each other as an ant from an elephant. However, I am still hazy on what it is that makes them different. St. Thomas seems to say something about their powers causing their difference, but I know I read a clearer explanation from him somewhere, I just can't remember where. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Sharon

The idea of a guardian angel , not angels per se, is about the only Church teaching with which I have a problem. Of we all have a guardian angel where was it when all of those children were abused?

Mark Brumley

Apparently, they were unable to prevent the abuse.

While I understand the problem that gives rise to the question, I think the complexities of the relationship between the spiritual and material dimensions of reality are so great that it is hard to give simple answers to questions such as this. Very hard, especially if specifics are sought.

Why do bad things happen to good people? Or why do good things happen to bad people? Why do good things happen at all? We can give general answers but we can't always see how the general answers apply in specific situations.

Certainly, if guardian angels (or even God's providence) intervened always to prevent bad things from happening, the world of volitional cause and effect would cease. how could I even think bad thoughts, as C.S. Lewis noted in Miracles?

Does that mean any and every bad thing must be allowed to happen? No. But why some bad things are prevented and others permitted to happen is mysterious.

It is true that God allows bad things to happen in order that some good comes to exist that otherwise would not exist (such as you and I, who certainly would not exist right now if God never allowed bad things to happen). But why that good should be permitted to come to be at the cost of evil occuring when another good would have been had evil not been allowed to happen is mysterious.

Theologians speak of greater good coming to be as a result of God allowing evil to happen. We can suppose that if this is true, as I think it is, that when all is said and done in history we shall see why things were allowed to be as they were and we shall all acknowledge the wisdom and goodness of it. But it is hard to see that now. It takes great faith, hope and love.

kelly

Here is my little angel story. In 2004 I gave birth to a son with Down syndrome. He did not learn to speak at the same rate as typical children and at the age of about 14 months we began teaching him sign language. We started with a video called "Signing Times" that featured rudimentary words, many of them the signs for common animals and toys.

It just so happened that for many months, when I rocked my son to sleep each night he would gaze up at his ceiling and his eyes would slowly wander across his sightline as though he was watching something leisurly moving around. I used to joke and say "tell your friend good night". Sometimes it unnerved me as he seemed to be watching something so intently.

After a few weeks of the sign language I finally asked him what he was looking at in the dimness of his nighttime bedroom. He made two signs.
"Bird" and "doll".

I had always suspected that angels rejoiced in my son's arrival to us. Now I really knew.

K.

This is a wonderful article. Thank you.

To Blake Helgoth: Our Lord is Truth, Mercy and Love. Their protection is given to God! *Always* are we in God's protection and care. Remember what Christ said on the cross "Father forgive them for they know not what they do." (St. Luke 23:34) Some of the most horrifying things that happen will still *always* be triumphed through God's love and mercy. During some of the most tumultuous times in our lives was it when God had us closer than ever before. CS Lewis said "God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks to us in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: It is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world."

To Mark Brumley: What an incredible story!!!!! It reminds me of a story a friend told me a few years ago. She wrote a song about her friend's daughter. The baby girl had a medical condition which meant she was in great pain. However, her mother didn't understand because her baby girl smiled constantly and was always in very high spirits. Especially when she was alone in her crib at night, and would be singing and cooing and looking around the ceiling, just like you described, as if following something. The doctor told her there was simply no other explanation than that her baby was constantly surrounded and protected by the angels.

K.

I'm sorry, I followed the names incorrectly in my above response.
Corrected:


This is a wonderful article. Thank you.

To Sharon: Our Lord is Truth, Mercy and Love. Their protection is given to God! *Always* are we in God's protection and care. Remember what Christ said on the cross "Father forgive them for they know not what they do." (St. Luke 23:34) Some of the most horrifying things that happen will still *always* be triumphed through God's love and mercy. During some of the most tumultuous times in our lives was it when God had us closer than ever before. CS Lewis said "God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks to us in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: It is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world."

To Kelly: What an incredible story!!!!! It reminds me of a story a friend told me a few years ago. She wrote a song about her friend's daughter. The baby girl had a medical condition which meant she was in great pain. However, her mother didn't understand because her baby girl smiled constantly and was always in very high spirits. Especially when she was alone in her crib at night, and would be singing and cooing and looking around the ceiling, just like you described, as if following something. The doctor told her there was simply no other explanation than that her baby was constantly surrounded and protected by the angels.

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