PMPC IV

St. Philip Neri

Philip Neri was born in Florence, Italy, in 1515 into a poor family. As a young man, he received word in a vision that he had a special mission in Rome, so he cut himself off from his family and friends and left.

While in Rome, he studied philosphy and theology, and tutored young boys. Eventually Philip became bored of learning, so he sold all of his books, gave the money he received from them to the poor, and visited the sick.

Later, he co-founded the Confraternity of the Most Holy Trinity and began to preach, and many people converted thanks to Philip's preaching and example. During this time, he was a lay person and lived as a hermit, however a good friend eventually convinced him to enter the priesthood, and he was ordained in 1551.

Many people came to him for confession. He also began to work with youth. Pope Gregory XIV wanted to make Philip a cardinal, but the priest declined.

He then founded the Congregation of the Oratory, also known as the Oratorians, dedicated to preaching and teaching, and they still exist today.

He died May 27, 1595, and was canonized by Pope Gregory XV in 1622. He is the patron of Rome and the U.S. Army Special Forces.


Acts 18:9-18

9 And the Lord said to Paul one night in a vision, "Do not be afraid, but speak and do not be silent;
10 for I am with you, and no man shall attack you to harm you; for I have many people in this city."
11 And he stayed a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.
12 But when Gallio was proconsul of Acha'ia, the Jews made a united attack upon Paul and brought him before the tribunal,
13 saying, "This man is persuading men to worship God contrary to the law."
14 But when Paul was about to open his mouth, Gallio said to the Jews, "If it were a matter of wrongdoing or vicious crime, I should have reason to bear with you, O Jews;
15 but since it is a matter of questions about words and names and your own law, see to it yourselves; I refuse to be a judge of these things."
16 And he drove them from the tribunal.
17 And they all seized Sos'thenes, the ruler of the synagogue, and beat him in front of the tribunal. But Gallio paid no attention to this.
18 After this Paul stayed many days longer, and then took leave of the brethren and sailed for Syria, and with him Priscilla and Aq'uila. At Cen'chre-ae he cut his hair, for he had a vow.


John 16:20-23

20 Truly, truly, I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice; you will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy.
21 When a woman is in travail she has sorrow, because her hour has come; but when she is delivered of the child, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a child is born into the world.
22 So you have sorrow now, but I will see you again and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.
23 In that day you will ask nothing of me. Truly, truly, I say to you, if you ask anything of the Father, he will give it to you in my name.


Psalms 47:2-7

1 Clap your hands, all peoples! Shout to God with loud songs of joy!
2 For the LORD, the Most High, is terrible, a great king over all the earth.
3 He subdued peoples under us, and nations under our feet.
4 He chose our heritage for us, the pride of Jacob whom he loves. [Selah]
5 God has gone up with a shout, the LORD with the sound of a trumpet.
6 Sing praises to God, sing praises! Sing praises to our King, sing praises!


Lord, give me hope and courage

6th Week of Easter

St Philip Neri, priest
Acts 18:9-18; Ps. 47(46):2-3,4-5,6-7;
Jn. 16:20-23 (Ps Wk II)


Even amid turmoil and scrapes with authorities, Paul and his companions drew some individuals to the faith. The Roman prefect Gallio wanted nothing to do with the squabble, but the mob took out their fury on Paul and his companions. We should not be disturbed by resistance and difficulties; God works in them and through them. As the angel of God told them, ‘Do not be afraid to speak, for I am with you.’

The suffering and death of Jesus was nothing to rejoice over, and the disciples were sad and anxious. Jesus reassured them — they would be sad now while the world rejoiced, but everything would soon be reversed. He likened it to childbirth, which involves temporary pain and suffering. Afterwards, there is joy over the birth of a child. Likewise, a new world was struggling to be born, and it too would involve birthing pains. New life always involves struggle. Today the old world is passing away and a new one is coming to be. We are in the midst of pain, but we should remember that it will pass. There will come a day when we rejoice with the Lord while the world and its negative forces mourn. We call it the kingdom of God. Let us have hope!

Lord, give me hope and courage.