Monday, September 23, 2013

The Feast of St. Michael and All Angels - Daniel 10:10-14; 12:1-3

Daniel 10:10-14; 12:1-3
My favorite angel movie is “Michael” starring John Travolta and rightly so since it was filmed in Texas. (Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Corn Hill, county roads near Walburg and the iconic Gruene Hall no less!) Michael, the Great Prince and protector of God’s people in Daniel’s vision has nothing in common with the vacationing come to earth one last time Travolta version but then most of our imaginings take liberties with whatever God had in mind when angelic beings were created. Close proximity to the real deal causes fear and trembling while Travolta’s less than angelic Michael smokes cigarettes, smells like fresh baked cookies and drives women wild. On the other hand he gives up the last of his allotted miracles to bring a dead dog back to life and what’s not angelic about that? Truth is we lose sight of God’s purpose when we focus on the details (how many angels can dance on the head of a pin?) or try to figure out from Daniel’s dream what time the end time will begin. I dare say the world has experienced times of anguish “such has never occurred” a thousand times over with no end in sight and some are experiencing “such has never occurred” even as I type these words. But the chief of princes is not dispatched for a last hurrah on earth or to deliver a message of doom and gloom. No. Michael is sent to proclaim the good news of deliverance to desperate people in the same way the angelic chorus sang over a barn in Bethlehem, “Peace on earth. Good will to those with whom God is pleased.” But because I've loved and lost multiple dogs I choose to believe God might also like the version of Michael where Sparky barks again as much as I do.

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