Thursday, May 26, 2011

Happy Feast of St. Philip Neri, IC Blog!

St. Philip Neri, the joyful priest and mystic who loved God and a good joke, has his feast today. May 26th.  Along with St. Francis de Sales, he is the patron saint of this blog.

Don't know anything about him?  You should.  Go here.  And here is a snippet:
Philip was known to be spontaneous and unpredictable, charming and humorous.

He seemed to sense the different ways to bring people to God. One man came to the Oratory just to make fun of it. Philip wouldn't let the others throw him out or speak against him. He told them to be patient and eventually the man became a Dominican. On the other hand, when he met a condemned man who refused to listen to any pleas for repentance, Philip didn't try gentle words, but grabbed the man by the collar and threw him to the ground. The move shocked the criminal into repentance and he made a full confession.

Humility was the most important virtue he tried to teach others and to learn himself. Some of his lessons in humility seem cruel, but they were tinged with humor like practical jokes and were related with gratitude by the people they helped. His lessons always seem to be tailored directly to what the person needed. One member who was later to become a cardinal was too serious and so Philip had him sing the Misere at a wedding breakfast. When one priest gave a beautiful sermon, Philip ordered him to give the same sermon six times in a row so people would think he only had one sermon.

Philip preferred spiritual mortification to physical mortification. When one man asked Philip if he could wear a hair shirt, Philip gave him permission -- if he wore the hair shirt outside his clothes! The man obeyed and found humility in the jokes and name-calling he received.

...Philip did not escape this spiritual mortification himself. As with others, his own humbling held humor. There are stories of him wearing ridiculous clothes or walking around with half his beard shaved off. The greater his reputation for holiness the sillier he wanted to seem. When some people came from Poland to see the great saint, they found him listening to another priest read to him from joke books.

Philip was very serious about prayer, spending hours in prayer. He was so easily carried away that he refused to preach in public and could not celebrate Mass with others around. But he when asked how to pray his answer was, "Be humble and obedient and the Holy Spirit will teach you."

Also a good site with a saying a day from St. Philip here.

Happy Feast Day, Blog!


Anonymous said...

...and happy birthday to you!

- LBIC (little brother of IC)

The Ironic Catholic said...

hey, which little brother?

Allen's Brain said...

Birthday to Happy you, IC!
And thanks for the info on Neri!

'Wonder if I could get a patron saint badge of St Espressus of Java for my blog.