Hark the Herald Angels…

 

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Have you ever encountered an angel?

Found in all three of the Abrahamic religions Judaism, Christianity and Islam, angels have been thought of as intermediaries between God and us humans. In fact, the word angel  is from the Greek angelos and means messenger.

Mentioned nearly 300 times in the Bible, angels are supernatural, largely benevolent, usually depicted in works of art as very beautiful, human-like beings with wings and halos of light. Some of these angels are named. We have most of us heard of Michael or Gabriel, but there are many others.

There are a great many stories about angels from all three of the Abrahamic religions and most of us learned some of those stories as children. Angels are said to guide and protect us whether archangel or seraphim or those chubby little baby angels we call cherubs.

You may also have been taught that each of us has a guardian angel who is specifically assigned to watch over us. Personally I found that quite spooky as a child, but many derive comfort from the idea that we each have our own personal protective guide to encourage us on the ‘right path’.

Image by Please Don’t sell My Artwork AS IS from Pixabay

While angels are written about in the Hebrew Bible (the Christian Old Testament), angelology only really became part of popular Christian culture with the studies and writings of theologians such as Thomas Aquinas between 1100 and 1200 AD.

Their connection with Christmas begins with the Annunciation, the visitation where Mary was told  that she was chosen by God and she was to have a baby who would become the founder of a new religion.

An angel also appeared to the shepherds near Jesus’s birthplace, and no nativity scene in any Christmas celebrations would be complete without at least one angel, praying, singing or playing music.

We have all encountered the angel on top of the Christmas tree, or other angel ornaments. The evergreen tree itself was a pagan symbol, representing life long before Christians adopted it, but in those far-off days it would definitely not have contained angels among its branches.

And something for the kids?

We found this page (link below) which has some free printable colouring sheets of angels which might keep some young budding artists occupied while the grown-ups get organised.

Christmas Angel Colouring Pages – Free Colouring Pages (colouring-pages.co.uk)

Kitty Parsons

Kitty has forgotten how long she has been here now but she loves Pembrokeshire for its beauty and it's people. She spends her time searching out stories for pembrokeshire.online, swimming in the sea , drawing and painting as Snorkelfish and eating cake. She says "Pembrokeshire.online has been an opportunity to celebrate this beautiful county and its people. Keep the stories coming. We love to hear from you."

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