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September – October 2017

Why do Catholics pray the Angelus?

Angelus is a short devotion in honor of the incarnation of Christ. The devotion is called the Angelus because the first words of the prayers to be said begin as follows, “The Angel of the Lord declared unto Mary.” The Angelus, therefore, reminds us of the message of the Angel Gabriel who brought good news of the birth of Jesus Christ. And Catholics are asked to begin the day by remembering this great benefit; to recollect it again at noon, and at sunset or the close of the day.

An old English manuscript says that the Angelus in the morning should remind us of Christ’s resurrection at dawn; at noon of His death on the cross; and at eventide of His birth at midnight in the cave of Bethlehem. In any case, the Angelus is to remind Catholics of the fact that the Son of God came into this world for the redemption of mankind, and that they themselves should never forget it.

[Editor’s note: This is a slightly revised version of an answer featured in #1428 Radio Replies, First Volume, by Fathers Rumble and Carty.]

The Angelus [Happy Saints Prayer Posters]