St. Michael the Archangel is one of God’s angels that are mentioned in the bible. He is believed to be the leader of God’s army against the devil.
Because of this, people and devotees often invoke his name when they are afraid that they may be under the temptation of the devil.
The prayer was shelved as part of the Mass after the reforms of the Second Vatican Council but garnered renewed interest in 2018. Around this time, new revelations of the sexual abuse of children by the clergy have been surfacing. In October of that year, Pope Francis invoked the prayer and suggested that it be recited during Masses. (Read: LIST: Christian Persecutions Happening Around the World)
“[The church must be] saved from the attacks of the malign one, the great accuser and at the same time be made ever more aware of its guilt, its mistakes, and abuses committed in the present and the past,” Francis said in a message on Sept. 29 of that year.
The prayer was composed by Pope Leo XIII in 1886, who added it to the Mass. The threat to the church at the time was the Italian government’s campaign against the Papal States, which was settled in 1929 with an agreement setting the current boundaries of the Vatican State. Later, the prayer was invoked to ask for the conversion of Russia during the Soviet regime.
Invoke St. Michael the Archangel’s protection against evil through this prayer.
Prayer to St. Michael
St. Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle;
Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray,
And do thou, O prince of the heavenly hosts,
By the power of God,
Thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits
Who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls.
Pope Leo XIII (1884)