Saint Selaphiel the Archangel
Archangel Selaphiel Carrying a Thurible by Bartolomé Román, 17th century.
|Venerated in||Eastern Orthodox Church|
Eastern Catholic Churches
Saint Selaphiel the Archangel or Saint Sealtiel, Selatiel (Aramaic צלתיאל Tzelathiel "Prayer of God", Heb. שאלתיאל Shealtiel), sometimes identified with Salathiel from the Second Book of Esdras. He is one of the seven archangels in the Byzantine Catholic and Eastern Orthodox traditions.
Selaphiel appears in verse 31:6 of the apocryphal Jewish and Christian text The Conflict of Adam and Eve, which describes how God sends him and Suriyel to help rescue Adam and Eve from Satan’s deception, commanding Selaphiel “to bring them down from the top of the high mountain and to take them to the Cave of Treasures.”
Some Christian traditions consider Selaphiel as the angel in Revelation 8:3-4 in the New Testament, who presents the prayers of people on Earth to God in heaven: "Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all God’s people, on the golden altar in front of the throne. The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of God’s people, went up before God from the angel’s hand."
Selaphiel is often seen as the Patron Saint of prayer and worship for members of the Eastern Orthodox Church and some Catholic traditions. In some Orthodox traditions, he is said to help people interpret dreams, break addictions, protect children, preside over exorcisms, and rule over music in heaven. Orthodox Christians will seek his help if their prayer is suffering from distractions, inattentiveness, or coldness. In Catholic tradition, he is depicted as a thurifer.
A prayer often said in Orthodox and Catholic traditions is the simple St. Selaphiel Prayer for Intercession:
O Pure and Holy Archangel St. Selaphiel (Sealtiel), thou dost bow before the Almighty Lord offering angelic salutations of praise and thanksgiving. Guide us in our prayer. Like thee, we would like to unceasingly pray and worship God in the right way. May our lives be like incense pleasing to God. While awaiting for the inevitable time of separation from this material world, may we praise the Holy Trinity in the spirit of true love and humility throughout the days of our lives in eternity. Obtain for us these favors (name them) and present to God the Father all these petitions through Jesus Christ our Lord, together with the Holy Spirit, forever and ever. Amen.
When depicted in iconography by himself or with individual characteristics, he is shown in an attitude of humble prayer, with downcast eyes and arms crossed over his breast. But when the wickedness of Mankind has reached its limits he turns from humbleness and is given a new task which is The voice of Death and when mankind has reached a point to where they need tobe culled by the angel of Death once more he will cry out into the night begging the Lord YHWH to return and slaughter the EVIL of man which has grown rampant among the nation's. He is also sometimes seen kneeling with incense in a thurifer, praying. Prayer is considered his special attribute.
- "The World of The Angels". Transfiguration of Our Lord Russian Orthodox Church. Retrieved December 22, 2005.