Michaelmas is one of my favorite lesser-known church holidays, but even in the time of COVID-19, Tuesdays are kind of a hectic day for us, so I decided to make a special dinner tonight for Michaelmas Eve. The main dish was beef Wellington:
It was a pretty fancy dinner for a Monday!
For dessert I made a pumpkin angel food cake roll:
Surprisingly, I didn’t really like it, but the children did, and it looked really nice!
Now I can officially start counting down the days until Advent!
“Christ, the Lord of hosts, unshaken
By the devil’s seething rage,
Thwarts the plan of Satan’s minions;
Wins the strife from age to age;
Conquers sin and death forever;
Slams them in their steely cage.
Michael fought the heav’nly battle,
Godly angels by his side;
Warred against the ancient serpent,
Foiled the beast, so full of pride,
Cast him earthbound with his angels;
Now he prowls, unsatisfied.
Long on earth the battle rages,
Since the serpent’s first deceit;
Twisted God’s command to Adam,
Made forbidden fruit look sweet.
Then the curse of God was spoken:
‘You’ll lie crushed beneath His feet!’
Jesus came, this word fulfilling,
Trampled Satan, death defied;
Bore the brunt of our temptation,
On the wretched tree He died.
Yet to life was raised victorious;
By His life our life supplied.
Swift as lightning falls the tyrant
From his heav’nly perch on high.
As the word of Jesus’ vict’ry
Floods the earth and fills the sky.
Wounded by a wound eternal
Now his judgement has drawn nigh!
Jesus, send Your angel legions
When the foe would us enslave.
Hold us fast when sin assaults us;
Come, then, Lord, Your people save.
Overthrow at last the dragon;
Send him to his fiery grave.” Lutheran Service Book #521
It’s hard to believe, but we’re already about 1/5 of the way through our school year!
Math has continued to go extremely well. Turkey and Bunny have been working with complementary, supplementary, and vertical angles. Ladybug has been working on word problems, and Chickadee is still practicing counting by tens.
History has been fun. Ladybug learned about some things her older siblings already covered, including the Epic of Gilgamesh. Turkey and Bunny, meanwhile, learned about something Ladybug already studied…Hammurabi’s Code. They are currently reading about the Hyksos and King Minos of Crete.
They may not like it, but Turkey and Bunny have continued doing well with diagramming sentences. Much to their annoyance, Ladybug keeps mentioning how much she enjoys doing so (although that’s not always so obvious to her teacher!). Chickadee has added her first vowel to her letter studies this week, and can now read words like mat and rat! She’s very excited to finally be reading something!!!
Today we took a break from everything but math to attend the Divine Service for the feast of St. Michael and All Angels at the LC-MS International Center, where our pastor happened to be preaching. This is one of my favorite church days of the year, so I was very happy to be there. We also took a walk through the museum while we were in the building. Even though we’ve visited several times in the past, we always notice something new!
It’s finally starting to cool off…hopefully we’ll get to do some of the outdoor field trips I’ve been planning soon!
I can’t think of any better way to celebrate a church feast (other than, well church), than with a family feast. So, we had a special dinner of chicken medallions with angel hair pasta, and a heavenly angel food cake roll for dessert:
And, as a bonus, here are the Fab Five with their hand and footprint angels that they made this afternoon:
Michaelmas is one of my favorite (although often overlooked) feast days, and I love celebrating it with my family!
The name of the archangel St. Michael means “Who is like God?” Michael is mentioned in the Book of Daniel (12:), as well as in Jude (v. 9) and Revelation (12:7). Daniel portrays Michael as the angelic helper of Israel who leads the battle against the forces of evil. In Revelation, Michael and his angels fight against and defeat Satan and the evil angels, driving them from heaven. Their victory is made possible by Christ’s own victory over Satan in His death and resurrection, a victory announced by the voice in heaven: “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come” (Revelation 12:10). Michael is often associated with Gabriel and Raphael, the other chief angels or archangels who surround the throne of God. Tradition names Michael as the patron and protector of the Church, especially as the protector of Christians at the hour of death.
In the Western church, St. Michael and All Angels has been celebrated since the 12th century. At the time of the Reformation, the Lutherans revised the celebration of former holidays and saint days in order to give greater prominence to the work of Jesus. St. Michael and All Angels was retained in the Lutheran liturgical calendar because it was seen as a principal feast about Christ. In fact, Philip Melanchthon, a colleague of Dr. Martin Luther, even wrote a hymn about St. Michael and All Angels (LSB 522, “Lord God, To Thee We Give All Praise”).
At first, this might strike us as strange. How is a feast named after an archangel about Jesus? But as with all commemorations within the Lutheran Church, the focus is not on the person but held in grateful thanksgiving to our Lord for using this person (or His holy angels) to give glory to His name and to bring about salvation for His people. The event celebrated on the Feast of St. Michael and All Angels is thus important both in regard to our salvation and to the comfort it brings the Christian conscience.
Today is the Feast of St. Michael and All Angels, (also known as Michaelmas), one of those rare “white days” that appear on the church year calendar amid the sea of green that is the Time of the Church. I was surprised to discover that Lutheran Service Book has not one, but three hymns, (#520-522), appropriate for this day. Here are the words to one of them, “Lord God, to Thee We Give All Praise,” the famous angelic hymn by Philipp Melanchthon:
“Lord God, to Thee we give all praise, With grateful hearts our voices raise, That angel hosts Thou didst create Around Thy glorious throne to wait.
They shine with light and heav’nly grace And constantly behold Thy face; They heed Thy voice, they know it well, In godly wisdom they excel.
They never rest nor sleep as we; Their whole delight is but to be With Thee, Lord Jesus, and to keep Thy little flock, Thy lambs and sheep.
The ancient dragon is their foe; His envy and his wrath they know. It always is his aim and pride Thy Christian people to divide.
As he of old deceived the world And into sin and death has hurled, So now he subtly lies in wait To undermine both Church and state.
A roaring lion, round he goes, No halt nor rest he ever knows; He seeks the Christians to devour And slay them by his dreadful pow’r.
But watchful is the angel band That follows Christ on ev’ry hand To guard His people where they go And break the counsel of the foe.
For this, now and in days to be, Our praise shall rise, O Lord, to Thee, Whom all the angel hosts adore With grateful songs forevermore.” Lutheran Service Book#522