A reader writes:
Listening to one of the Catholic Answers Q&A sessions, you mention no gender in angels. Would the fact that Angels are named, Michael, Raphael, Gabriel be named for our sake to show male strength in earlier times?
Okay, I’m not sure I understand the question, but if I read you correctly, you are wondering whether the fact that angels in the Bible have masculine names means that God is accomodating their names to ancient Hebrew culture, which identified strength with masculinity (angels being stronger than us).
To tell you the truth, I’ve never dug into Hebrew naming practices thoroughly enough to know whether the angels in question have names that sound distinctly male in Hebrew. Hypothetically, they could be bi-gendered names, like "Chris" or "Terry" or "Kelly" are in English, which can be either male or female. My suspicion, though, is that you’re correct and that these are male-sounding names in Hebrew.
However that may be, the angels are certainly pictured as males, and this is no doubt an accomodation to Hebrew culture in some way. It could be the strength of the angels that is the determining factor (Michael and Gabriel are depicted as engaging in heavenly warfare–a male occupation), or it could be something else. Raphael serves as a travelling companion for Tobias, and a woman would not be a fit travelling companion for an unmarried male in their day.
On the other hand, it seems that whenever angels are mentioned they are depicted (if they are depicted as humans) as male, even when they aren’t named. It may be that strength is the cause, or it might be the role they play: They’re God’s messengers. That’s what the word "angel" means in the biblical languages: messenger. Since kings used male messengers in that day, this could be why.
It also could be that they are in some way priestly, serving in the heavenly Temple, and in ancient Israel only males served as officials in the Temple.
So . . . it’s kinda hard to say for sure. My guess would be the messenger idea, though.