Partners in Holiness: Guardian Angels in the Lives of the Saints
by Melaine Ryther
I have always found stories of Guardian Angels fascinating. For this reason, I was very excited to have the opportunity to review “Partners in Holiness,” a new ebook by Melaine Ryther that focuses on the role of Guardian Angels in the lives of the saints.
“According to St. Thomas Aquinas, an angel takes watch over a person’s body and soul at the very moment of birth. All of us, whether we are saints or sinners, believers or skeptics,have guardian angels who: protect us from physical and spiritual harm; pray for us constantly before the throne of God; inspire us with good thoughts; incline us toward virtue; drive away evil; strengthen and console us in our sufferings; and eagerly await our prayers so that they may help us even more. The angels want us to become saints. And everything they do for us is a means to that very end.”
Ryther shares the stories of how Guardian Angels manifested themselves to some of the saints. Pope St. Gregory the Great saw his angel as a poor merchant whom God had sent to test his charity. St. Isidore’s angel did farmwork. St. Margaret’s angel provided comfort and taught her. St. Lydwine, who was confined to bed, had an angel
who took her on trips both to places in this world and the next. St. John Bosco’s angel appeared as a grey dog who provided protection whenever he needed it. Tales of St. Rose, St. Frances of Rome, St. Gemma Galgani, and St. Padre Pio are also included. These stories are fascinating and serve as great evidence of the powerful role Guardian Angels can play in our lives.
At the end of the book, Ryther provides a very helpful section with ideas on how to pray and interact with our Guardian Angels every day of the week.
“Partners in Holiness” was written to not only educate readers about the power of Guardian Angels but also to encourage us to call on them daily. All we need to do is ask for their help. All we need to do is ask. “Call on them and honor them frequently,” St. Francis de Sales says of the angels, “and ask their help in your affairs, temporal as well as spiritual.” They are our partners in holiness, every day of our lives.