Is Mario Andretti my Guardian Angel?

Today is the feast of the Guardian Angels, and I am a big fan of my Guardian Angel, Mario.  I’ve been praying the Guardian Angel prayer since I was a little kid and still do so every day.  It wasn’t until 9 years ago that I discovered my Guardian Angels name.

I was on a business trip to Lansing, Michigan, a trip I have made over a hundred times in the past ten years.  On this particular trip, I was heading north on Interstate 69, between Jackson and Lansing, when a tractor-trailer rig passed me like I was standing still.  As the truck passed, he immediately started pulling into my lane and I quickly realized that his trailer was going to hit me or worse yet drive me off the road.

I hit my brakes and veered to the right to avoid a collision, but as I did, I hit some gravel in the berm and started into a spin out.

My SUV made three complete revolutions, crossing from the right lane to the left lane and back again, barely missing several vehicles on the busy highway.

Everything seemed as if it was in slow motion, and I realized that someone else was guiding the steering wheel.  Finally, I came to rest in the center island, facing oncoming traffic, completely stopped. Without a scratch on my SUV and, as best I could determine other than a bunch of papers from my passenger seat that littered the floor of the car, all of the contents including me was safe!

When I realized that the nightmare was over, I prayed, “thank you, Lord for guiding me through this without anyone getting injured.  I know that my Guardian Angel was in control, because even Mario Andretti couldn’t have escaped what had happened without a serious accident!

From that day forward, my Guardian Angel was Mario!  Now when I pray the Guardian Angel prayer, I include him:

Angel of God, My Guardian Dear
To whom God’s love commits me here.
Ever this day be at my side
To light and guard and rule and guide.
P.S.  Mario, keep me safe today!

I read recently that the Church doesn’t recommend naming your Guardian Angel, although, I can’t understand why?

Unless, of course, when I finally meet my Guardian Angel in heaven and we embrace in a big man-hug, he looks at me and says, “Tony!”   And I enthusiastically reply, “Mario!”

Then he says, “Uh, Tony, I’ve been meaning to talk with you about that, my name isn’t Mario.”

Embarrassed by this realization, I respond, “I am so sorry for calling you by the wrong name all of these years.  Tell me, what is your name?”

With a smile bigger than life he replies, “Dale, Junior!

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