St. Gabriel the Archangel
Gabriel appears regularly in Scripture as a messenger of God’s word, both in the Old and New Testaments. Daniel identifies Gabriel as a “man” who came “to give [him] insight and understanding,” relaying prophetic answers to Daniel’s entreaties to God.
In the New Testament, Luke relays Gabriel’s appearances to both Zechariah and the Virgin Mary. At the former, he informs the priest that his wife, Elizabeth, will soon conceive a child; at the latter he informs Mary herself that she will do the same. The two children in question, of course, were respectively John the Baptist and Jesus Christ.
Christian tradition further associates Gabriel with the apostle Paul’s reference in his First Letter to the Thessalonians to the “archangel’s call” and “the sound of the trumpet of God.”
“Judgment will begin with the archangel’s call and the sound of the horn,” Aquilina told CNA. “Thus we hear often of Gabriel’s trumpet.”
Media workers in particular have “good professional reasons to go to Gabriel,” Aquilina said.
“Since he is the Bible’s Great Communicator — the great teller of Good News — he is the natural patron of broadcasters and all those who work in electronic media,” he said.
“For the same reason, he’s the patron saint of preachers ... but also of postal workers, diplomats, and messengers.”
The St. Gabriel Prayer: O Blessed Archangel Gabriel, we beseech thee, do thou intercede for us at the throne of divine Mercy in our present necessities, that as thou didst announce to Mary the mystery of the Incarnation, so through thy prayers and patronage in heaven we may obtain the benefits of the same, and sing the praise of God forever in the land of the living. Amen.
St. Raphael the Archangel
Lesser-known among the three great archangels, Raphael’s mission from God “is not obvious to the casual reader” of the Bible, Aquilina said. Yet his story, depicted in the Book of Tobit, is “something unique in the whole Bible.” In other depictions of angels, they come to Earth only briefly, to deliver a message or to help God’s favored people in some way.
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“Raphael is different,” Aquilina said. “He stays around for the whole story, and by the end he’s become something more than an angel ... he’s become a friend.”
In Tobit, Raphael accompanies Tobias, the son of the book’s namesake, as he travels to retrieve money left by his father in another town, helping him along the way and arranging for his marriage to Sarah.
The biblical account “has in every generation provided insight and consolation to the devout,” Aquilina said.
Notably, Raphael deftly uses the natural world to work God’s miracles: “What we would ordinarily call catastrophes — blindness, multiple widowhood, destitution, estrangement — all these become providential channels of grace by the time the threads of the story are all wound up in the end.”
“Raphael is patron of many kinds of people,” Aquilina said. “Of course, he’s the patron of singles in search of a mate — and those in search of a friend. He is the patron of pharmacists because he provided the salve of healing. He is a patron for anyone in search of a cure.”
He is also the patron saint of blind people, travelers, sick people, and youth.