Why we need the St Michael prayer more than ever


Catholic Herald, 28 September 2017

Pope Leo XIII warned of a century of diabolic dominance

One expects that after having restored Friday abstinence and holy days of obligation, the bishops of England and Wales may look favourably upon requests to resume the Prayer to St Michael the Archangel, recited after “Low Mass” from the time of Pope Leo XIII to the reforms of Blessed Paul VI.

St Michael’s feast falls this Friday, hence the English custom of referring to autumn schooldays as the “Michaelmas term”. As we mark the centenary of the Fatima apparitions, there are suggestive links between Leo XIII, the St Michael prayer and Fatima for those who are anniversary-minded.

We do not have a definitive historical account of what exactly happened to Pope Leo XIII, but there is a consensus on what roughly took place in the 1880s. After offering the Holy Mass one morning, Pope Leo was making his thanksgiving by attending another Mass, the custom for high-ranking prelates at the time. At some point those observing Leo noticed that he seemed transfixed, as if seeing a vision. Visibly troubled, he made his way from the chapel to his private office, his alarmed aides following with concern.

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