Mother Alexandra and Her Guardian Angel

guardian_angelThe following is a short excerpt from Mother Alexandra’s  (former Princess Ileana of Romania) small book, The Holy Angels. It is by far the best treatment I have seen on the subject despite its short length. This short account tells of her encounter with her guardian angel at age seven. In the service of Orthodox Baptism, the priest specifically prays that an angel of light be assigned to the life of the child being Baptized.

It was early morning, when I was seven years old, that I saw the angels. I am as sure of it now as I was then. I was not dreaming, nor “seeing things” – I just know they were there, plainly, clearly, distinctly. I was neither astonished nor afraid. I was not even awed – I was only terribly pleased. I wanted to talk to them and touch them.

Our night nursery was lit by the dawn and I saw a group of angels standing, as if chatting, around my brother’s bed. I was aware of this, although I could not hear their voices. They wore long flowing gowns of various soft-shaded colors. Their hair came to their shoulders, and different in color from fair and reddish to dark brown. They had no wings. At the foot of my brother Mircea’s bed stood one heavenly being, a little aside from the others – taller he was, and extraordinarily beautiful, with great white wings. In his right hand he carried a lighted taper; he did not seem to belong to the group of angels gathered around the bed. He clearly stood apart and on watch. I knew him to be the guardian angel. I then became aware that at the foot of my own bed stood a similar celestial creature. He was tall, his robe was dark blue with wide, loose sleeves. His hair was auburn, his face oval, and his beauty such as I cannot describe because it was comparable to nothing human. His wings swept high and out behind him. One hand was lifted to his breast, while in the other he carried a lighted taper. His smile can only be described as angelic; love, kindness, understanding, and assurance flowed from him. Delighted, I crawled from under the bedcovers and, kneeling up against the end of the bed, I stretched out my hand with the ardent wish to touch my smiling guardian, but he took a step back, put out a warning hand, and gently shook his head. I was so close to him I could have reached him easily. “Oh, please don’t go,” I cried; at which words all the other angels looked toward me, and it seemed I heard a silvery laugh, but of this sound I am not so certain, though I know they laughed. Then they vanished.

I was but a child when I saw my guardian angel. As time passed I still sporadically remembered and acknowledged his presence, but mostly, I ignored him…


  1. says

    Father Bless!

    Thank you for this post and for reminding me of Mother Alexandra’s book. I should continue reading it…

    I have a picture of her that was unexpectedly in a small booklet someone had lent me; it is in my living room and is a great comfort to me. Various people in my church knew her and when I think of her and the other monastics I know of, I can only chide myself for not living in hope and quietness all of my days.

  2. Mrs. Mutton says

    One of my greatest regrets in my old age is that when I was a teenager, the nuns at our school informed us that guardian angels were a “myth.” It’s only very recently that I have been trying to re-develop my childhood devotion to my guardian angel, and I feel as if I have wasted so many years when we could have been close. Well, maybe he’s the one who has kept me alive this long so that that relationship could *still* develop.

  3. Marcus says

    Father Stehpen,

    Father Bless!

    I must admit stories like this are a stumbling block for me. I suppose I’ve read so much on delusion and guarding oneself from visions that all these things are subject to skepticism. What are we to do when a friend comes to us and tells us they have seen an angel? The first thing I think of is demonic delusion, because it is what the Fathers taught these things typically are. Obviously, this was a very Holy woman, so I really should take this to heart, though it is hard for me. How are we to approach stories like this Father? Is my reserved attitude about visions healthy or is it not Orthodox?