Catechism of the Catholic Church

86 Part One 330 As purely spiritual creatures angels have intelligence and will: they are personal and immortal creatures, surpassing in per- fection all visible creatures, as the splendor of their glory bears witness. 190 Christ “with all his angels” 331 Christ is the center of the angelic world. They are his angels: “When the Son of man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him. . . .” 191 They belong to him because they were created through and for him: “for in him all things were created in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or prin- cipalities or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.” 192 They belong to him still more because he has made them messengers of his saving plan: “Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to serve, for the sake of those who are to obtain salvation?” 193 332 Angels have been present since creation and throughout the history of salvation, announcing this salvation from afar or near and serving the accomplishment of the divine plan: they closed the earthly paradise; protected Lot; saved Hagar and her child; stayed Abraham’s hand; communicated the law by their ministry; led the People of God; announced births and callings; and assisted the prophets, just to cite a few examples. 194 Finally, the angel Gabriel announced the birth of the Precursor and that of Jesus himself. 195 333 From the Incarnation to theAscension, the life of the Word incarnate is surrounded by the adoration and service of angels. When God “brings the firstborn into the world, he says: ‘Let all God’s angels worship him.’” 196 Their song of praise at the birth of Christ has not ceased resounding in the Church’s praise: “Glory to God in the highest!” 197 They protect Jesus in his infancy, serve him in the desert, strengthen him in his agony in the garden, when he could have been saved by them from the hands of his enemies as Israel had been. 198 Again, it is the angels who “evangelize” by pro- 190 Cf. Pius XII, Humani Generis: DS 3891; Lk 20:36; Dan 10:9-12. 191 Mt 25:31. 192 Col 1:16. 193 Heb 1:14. 194 Cf. Job 38:7 (where angels are called “sons of God”); Gen 3:24; 19; 21:17; 22:11; Acts 7:53; Ex 23:20-23; Judg 13; 6:11-24; Isa 6:6; 1 Kings 19:5. 195 Cf. Lk 1:11, 26. 196 Heb 1:6. 197 Lk 2:14. 198 Cf. Mt 1:20; 2:13, 19; 4:11; 26:53; Mk 1:13; Lk 22:43; 2 Macc 10:29-30; 11:8. 291 559