Today (26th May) is the feast of one of the most lovable saints of the Catholic Church, St Philip Neri.
St. Philip, born at Florence in the sixteenth century, left everything to serve the divine Master, and founded the Congregation of the Oratory.
The Holy Ghost had inflamed him with such love for God that the palpitations of his heart bent two of his ribs. He would spend whole nights in the contemplation of heavenly things and the Spirit of Truth “taught him true wisdom” (Epistle). His conversations with Jesus filled him with such intense joy that he exclaimed: “Enough, Lord, enough!”
He had an especial ministry to young men: “Amuse yourselves,” he said to them, “but do not offend God.”
He died in 1595 on the feast of Corpus Christi.
Like St. Philip, with our hearts full of a holy and loving joy, let us run in the way of the commandments of God.
Prayer to Saint Philip Neri
O my dear and holy Patron, Philip, I put myself into thy hands, and for the love of Jesus, for that love’s sake which chose thee and made thee a saint, I implore thee to pray for me, that, as He has brought thee to heaven so in due time He may take me to heaven also.
And I ask of thee especially to gain for me a true devotion such as thou hadst to the Holy Ghost, the Third Person in the Ever-blessed Trinity; that, as He at Pentecost so miraculously filled thy heart with His grace, I too may in my measure have the gifts necessary for my salvation.
Therefore I ask thee to gain for me those His seven great gifts, to dispose and excite my heart towards faith and virtue.
Beg for me the gift of Wisdom, that I may prefer heaven to earth and know truth from falsehood :
The gift of Understanding, by which I may have imprinted upon my mind the mysteries of His Word:
The gift of Counsel, that I may see my way in all perplexities:
The gift of Fortitude, that with bravery and stubbornness I may battle with my foe:
The gift of Knowledge, to enable me to direct all my doings with a pure intention to the glory of God:
The gift of Religion, to make me devout and conscientious:
And the gift of Holy Fear, to make me feel awe, reverence and sobriety amid all my spiritual blessings.
Sweetest Father, Flower of Purity, Martyr of Charity, pray for me.
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