THE ANGELS OF PRAYER
“How gentle is the Angel of Death!” Victoria said softly as we continued our walk.” I had to ensure that you put that in your book.”
“It is very good of you to be so interested,” I began, but she broke in laughingly.
“We love to spread the good news of the Father’s Love among men. This is the Gospel of Heaven, I think.”
“Are there any more angels to see?” Janet asked. Victoria linked her arm in Janet’s, exclaiming:
“There are so many that you could never exhaust them! However, I want you to meet a few more.”
As there is no scenery here, except that which remains the same,” I said, “why is it that we walk over the grass instead of remaining where we are?”
“Partly because you are still accustomed to travel and movement, but particularly because this grassy plain runs through the middle and is called the ‘Radiant Way.'”
“Where does it lead?
“To the Throne of God! Do not think by this,” Victoria added, “that this is the place of the eternal Throne and that it is in no other. I mean that as one continues this ‘Radiant Way’ one’s consciousness is deepened so that at the end one comes into closer union with the Father. I am on this Way for the first time, so that in pausing to conduct you into the presence of various angels I am but resting on my road. Those angels whom you have met, and will meet, have passed this Way many times. Look!” she exclaimed suddenly, “here are four you have already known.”
Coming towards us were our angel-guides, those who had guarded us on earth and guided us at the very beginning of our Heaven-journey. We cried out in pleasure at this. Janet went to welcome her guides, and I to mine while Victoria walked behind with our angel of the ruby gown.
What joy it gave me to see them again! It brought back to me so vividly my first awakening in Heaven, when I had opened my eyes to behold these two leaning against a trellis of vines. They were smiling too. They held out their hands to me, and then clasped me on the shoulder. Janet, I saw, was happily talking to her guides, and presently we all walked on, Janet with her angels, I with mine, and Victoria and the angel-guide following in the rear.
“Did you know we were to meet?” I asked. “I had no idea.”
“That is because you were meeting so many angels and learning so many things. Oh Bernard,” said my Heaven-guide, “what a lot you have learned since you gazed round the Hall of Reception saying, ‘So this is Heaven! Is there more to come?'” We laughed at the memory and then I said soberly:
“How far I have travelled, too, since you showed me the stains on my mystic robe and taught me how to make reparation to others for my sins against them.
“Yet what a happy time your Term of Reparation was,” said the earth-guide. “For men to take advantage of the Holy Sacrifice of the Saviour, is sweet indeed.”
I noticed that my angel’s robes were no longer white, but a clear green, so I asked: Are you still Guardian-Angels?
“Oh no! We have been raised to the Order of Prayer.”
“What do you do?” I queried, smiling at their evident joy.
“We travel over the earth, listening for prayers. When we hear one that is selfless and worthy, we return to the Father’s throne. Here we receive the necessary wisdom and knowledge to deal with it. Then we speed off to contact the angel who is needed for its fulfilment, give all the details and send him with the answers.”
“I notice you said that you listen for selfless prayers. You do not seek for answers to the others, then?
“Not the selfish, cruel or greedy prayers. Often it is the loving kindness of the Father which protects men in not answering such prayers. Evil has a way of returning to its source, you see, and harming the one who prays for it. In the world there is much hatred and evil, and many there are who pray amiss. Do you recall the words of the apostle? ‘Ye lust, and have not; ye kill and desire to have, and cannot obtain; ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss.’ The Angels of Prayer, in closing their ears at those times, are not hard of heart In loving-kindness they save men from many evils.”
“Where are you going now?” I asked. “A little girl has prayed for a doll. We go to ensure its answer.”
“Is not that a selfish prayer?” I asked in astonishment.
“Oh no,” one of them said, It is neither selfish nor greedy, for the child has no toy of any kind. Her prayer was prompted by trust in the Lord’s Love. She has just seen a picture of the Nativity, and in the trustful simplicity of her heart, she prayed, ‘Baby Jesus, if You would like me to have a dolly, I would so like one, but I know that You know best.’ Can you imagine how this warmed our hearts! Very soon, an angel will be speeding to whisper in the ear of a guardian angel of earth. That guardian will inspire his charge to give the child a doll – and so the prayer will be answered.”
“How happy you must be,” I said. –
“We are,” they answered with glowing eyes.
“Are Janet’s Guardian-Angels Angels of Prayer too?” I asked, noticing their green robes.
“Yes. Let us overtake them and hear what they have to say.”
We hastened our steps and soon I had the happiness of meeting those two who had cared for Janet so well since her birth. She, too, found joy in talking to my guides and we all continued in a group until Victoria arrived with the Ruby Angel.
“Do tell us what your mission is,” I begged Janet’s earth-guide.
“It is a very important one,” he explained, sitting down on the grass and inviting us with a gesture to do the same. Of course, we think every prayer-mission important,” the Heaven-guide smiled, “but this one particularly so.” She glanced at her companion. “Now I will be silent, while you tell them.”
“There is a young lad on earth,” began the angel, “who is destined for greatness. His father and mother had for many years desired a child and at last, while praying in the church, an angel appeared to the woman. She was one of the Angels of Conception who attend the Great Mother, but of course the woman did not know that. All she saw (and that not with bodily but with inward sight) a great luminous shining and in the midst the misty outline of the angel. At the same time the angelic messenger pressed upon her mind the knowledge that she would have a child at last, provided she and her husband dedicated him before his birth to the service of the Father. In ecstasy, she agreed at once and the angel said his name must be Alexander, which meant ‘helper of men’ because, in giving his life to the service of God he would also give it to humanity.”
Of course the woman hurried to her husband with the joyful news. He, being a simple and devout man, had no doubts of the reality of the vision. He at once returned with her to the Church where, kneeling before the Altar they made the required vow.
Now at that moment the Guardian Angels of the pair had
gathered about them many companions so that the church was filled with a host of angels. In due course the boy was born, and, of course, at his birth the same angelic host were present. The Angels of Birth poured forth their worship of their Maker, together with many gifts. All the others resolved to visit the child from time to time to see if there was any service they could render him. Sometimes, earth-people were able to catch a glimpse of their shining and then would exclaim at the radiance which appeared to surround the babe.
As he grew and reached his first year, it was noticed that animals and birds had no fear of him. They would flock around him as he lay sleeping in the garden. When the day was hot, birds would gently flutter their wings to fan him, and a great dog lay beside him to give him a shadow from the sun.
“Then when the boy had reached ten years, it seemed that a calamity had befallen him. (How often men of earth mistake the workings of the Divine Plan for sorrow!) His mother died.
“Now what happened was this. The boy had reached the stage when he had to go forth into the world alone. At least, it would seem to the boy that he was alone, but actually he was to have the continual guidance and blessing of his mother – something that he could not have had while she was on earth, for inevitably circumstances could have parted them during his education. His mother, one of the pure ones whose Flower grows in the Garden of the Lord, had been taken immediately to this Sphere, had wakened in the presence of the King and had then learned of her privileged mission. She was to have the freedom of earth and Heaven, watching over her lad and seeking all the angelic help he needed.
“At first the father was inconsolable and for a time his grief drowned the whispered instructions of his Guardian Angel. At last, however, he came to understand. Now he is sending the boy to boarding school.”
The angel fell silent, musing, so at last I asked: “What is your particular mission then?”
“Alexander has come upon his testing-time,” he continued.
Now, all the forces of evil will conspire to bring about his downfall for he will hear of, and see the dark shadows of sin. We go now to gather about us the great Angels of Protection, to conduct them to the boy. There they will remain until his need of them is less.”
“Then he will be certain to be safe,” Janet said happily.
“No,” said the angel. “That is where man’s own free will comes in. Every help will be given him, all instructions whispered in his heart and blessings will be abundantly showered upon him, but the final choice between good and evil rests with man himself. Never forget that. Alexander holds his own destiny in his hands.”
“We will pray too,” I promised, when I saw that the story was told. “Yes, do that!” agreed the Angel of Prayer.