Should we pray to learn a guardian angel's name?


While preparing lesson plans for 5th Grade Catechism, I read the following: “Teach the students the tradition of praying to learn their guardian angel’s name.” (Credo: I believe; Teacher’s Manual; Faith and Life Series 5, Revised Edition; Catholics United for Faith, Inc.; c 1987, 2004; p. 40.)

I never heard of this tradition. Is it valid and is there somewhere I can obtain some reference material to read about this, if it is valid?


I cannot recommend teaching children to pray for their guardian angel’s name. What if it isn’t revealed to them? Or, what if they mistake their own preference for a certain name to be an “answer” from God? In any event, the practice of naming guardian angels is discouraged by the Church:

Popular devotion to the holy angels, which is legitimate and good, can, however, also give rise to possible deviations … [such as the] practice of assigning names to the holy angels [which] should be discouraged, except in the cases of Gabriel, Raphael, and Michael whose names are contained in Holy Scripture (Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy 217).

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