What is an Archangel?

By Marshall Connolly

What is an archangel? This is a common question. Simply put, an archangel is an angel of high rank. Three are mentioned in the Bible. Saint Michael, Saint Gabriel, and Saint Raphael.

 
The Archangels are offices of high stature in heaven. These three angels mentioned in the Bible are given great responsibility and command of the other angels.

The word “angel” means messenger. An archangel then is a high messenger, a leader.

Saint Augustine said of Angels: “‘Angel’ is the name of their office, not of their nature. If you seek the name of their nature, it is ‘spirit’; if you seek the name of their office, it is ‘angel’: from what they are, ‘spirit,’ from what they do, ‘angel.'” With their whole beings the angels are servants and messengers of God. Because they “always behold the face of my Father who is in heaven” they are the “mighty ones who do his word, hearkening to the voice of his word” (See: CCC 329; Mt 18:10), via F.K. Bartels.
If you wish to learn more about these powerful angels, read this article here.

If you wish to learn more about Saint Michael, read his entry here in our Saints Collection.

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