St. Michael's and All Angels

First published in September 2015

Reverend Ray Gibbs reminds us of the battle St. Michael and his angels fought against Satan

We don't make a great fuss of it here, but 29 September is our (this church) day. Perhaps we should.

For the gardeners and allotment growers, folklore in the British Isles suggests that Michaelmas day is the last day that blackberries can be picked. So the story goes: 'It is said that when St. Michael expelled Lucifer, the devil, from heaven, he fell from the skies and landed in a prickly blackberry bush. Satan cursed the fruit, scorched them with his fiery breath, and stamped and spat on them, so that they would be unfit for eating'. A good yarn? Well, the blackberry bit is, but not the battle; it sounds much better in the King James language:

'And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven: Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren was cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! For the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time' Revelation 12: 7 - 12

So this Michaelmas (the 29th), find yourself a recipe for Michaelmas Dumpling or Pie and cook up a treat for yourself and others - and then take some time to pray and think on the prayer for St. Michael's.


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