Today is the feast of the Holy Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael. In today’s first reading, we heard:
“War broke out in heaven;
Michael and his angels battled against the dragon.
The dragon and its angels fought back,
but they did not prevail
and there was no longer any place for them in heaven.
The huge dragon, the ancient serpent,
who is called the Devil and Satan,
who deceived the whole world,
was thrown down to earth,
and its angels were thrown down with it.” (Rev 12, 7-9)
This scene is depicted in the Michaelerkirche in Vienna. The integration of the Baroque sculpture into the Gothic architecture is truly amazing.
Wikipedia explains: “The high altar was designed in 1782 by Jean-Baptiste d’Avrange. It is decorated with the monumental stucco alabaster Rococo sculpture Fall of the Angels (1782) by sculptor Karl Georg Merville. It represents a cloudburst of angels and cherubs, falling from the ceiling towards the ground. It was the last major Baroque work completed in Vienna. The centerpiece of the high altar is Maria Candia, a Byzantine icon of the Virgin Mary, belonging to the Cretan School of hagiography.”
(The photo is taken from Wikipedia)