St. Philip Neri
Feast day: May 26
Born in Florence, St. Philip Neri was an apprentice in his uncle’s merchant business. He left the business in 1533 to go to Rome to study philosophy and theology. He lived as a layman for years before founding a lay brotherhood for common worship and caring for the sick. While praying in the catacombs, Philip experienced an ecstasy and was later ordained to the priesthood. Along with his priest friends, Philip founded the Congregation of the Oratory in 1575. Respected and beloved in Rome, Philip was a trusted adviser to popes, cardinals and kings, and was equally consulted by peasants. He was known as the “Apostle of Rome.” Philip died in 1595 and was canonized in 1622. He is the patron of Rome and of humor.
O God, who never cease to bestow the glory of holiness
on the faithful servants you raise up for yourself,
that the Holy Spirit may kindle in us that fire
with which he wonderfully filled
the heart of Saint Philip Neri.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever. Amen.