St. Gemma Galgani and Her Guardian Angel
Photograph of St. Gemma Galgani, taken from Tonus Peregrinus blog
[The following is excerpted from the St. Gemma Galgani blog. 2 October is the Feast of the Guardian Angels.]
"Father Germano [Venerable Fr. Germanus Ruoppolo, C.P., a priest of the Passionist Order who was St. Gemma's spiritual director and biographer] continues '...He let her see him sometimes raised in the air with outspread wings, with his hands extended over her, or else hands joined in an attitude of prayer. At other times he would kneel beside her. If they were reciting vocal prayers or the Psalms, they did so alternately; if aspirations or prayers from the heart, "they rivaled one another" [these are Gemma's words] that is, they had a holy rivalry as to whom would say them with more fervor saying "Viva Gesu" or "Benedetto di Dio" and other such beautiful invocations. When it was time for meditation, the angel inspired her with sublimest ideas, and moved her affections so that the result of this holy exercise may be more perfect. The subject of these meditations was, for the most part, the Passion of Our Lord, the angel like a good master, laid open its profound mysteries to her soul. "Look" he would exclaim, "at what Jesus suffered for men. Consider each of these wounds. It is love that has opened them all. See how horrible sin is, since to expiate it, so much pain and so much love have been necessary." These and other such reflections went straight to the heart of the fervent Gemma.'"
"On another occasion she writes:
'I was in bed suffering greatly, when on a sudden I became absorbed in prayer. I joined my hands and, moved with heartfelt sorrow for my countless sins, I made an act of deep contrition. My mind was wholly plunged in this abyss of my crime against my God, when I beheld my Angel standing by my bed. I felt ashamed of being in his presence. He instead was more than courteous with me, and said, kindly: "Jesus loves thee greatly. Love Him greatly in return." Then he added: "Are you fond of Jesus' Mother? Salute Her very often, for She values such attention very much, and unfailingly returns the salutations offered to Her; and if you do not sense this, know that She makes a proof of your unfailing trust." He blessed me and disappeared.'"