Lonely hearts are being advised by the Catholic Church to consult an archangel to help them find love. The church is encouraging single people to look to heaven to find their soulmate in the run up to Valentine's Day tomorrow.
The Catholic Enquiry Office (CEO) in the UK is suggesting that, rather than enduring rounds of speed dating to find a partner, people could pray to Saint Raphael, the patron saint of "happy meetings". The saint, one of seven archangels, appears in the Book of Tobit, in the Old Testament part of the Catholic Bible.
The CEO claims that Saint Raphael, who comes to the aid of a woman called Sarah in the bible and sets her up with her spouse Tobias, has been a spiritual friend to generations of singles. "Many people have testified to the help they have received in finding a life partner through the prayerful help of the archangel," said Monsignor Keith Barltrop, CEO director.
"At this time of year, significant numbers are seeking someone special, or maybe dealing with recent heartbreak. Saint Raphael is there to help." He added: "If something is for our good and happiness, then God will answer our prayers as we ask."
Although certain that every prayer would be answered, Monsignor Barltrop admitted that the results might not always be what is expected. "You might be praying for a tall, dark and handsome person to come into your life, or a beautiful brunette, but God may have prepared someone quite different but wonderful for you," he explained.
"Prayerfully ask him, and find out for yourself."
The CES is offering tips from matchmaking experts on its website with information about St Raphael and details of a prayer campaign for singles starting tomorrow. The Telegraph
This impartial investigator wants to know where the Telegraph came up with the number "seven" for the number of archangels listed in the Old Testament: Michael, Gabriel; Raphael; ______; ______; ______; and ______.
Fill in the blanks and comment with footnotes and sources, please!