Thursday, May 25, 2023

The Feast of St Philip Neri, Priest and Founder.

The Feast of St Philip Neri, Founder of the Oratorians. 

"After Jesus had revealed himself to his disciples and eaten breakfast with them, he said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?”

 Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my lambs.” 

"He then said to Simon Peter a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.” 

"He said to him, “Tend my sheep.” 

"He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was distressed that he had said to him a third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.”

"Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep. Amen, amen, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to dress yourself and go where you wanted; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.”

"He said this signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God.

"And when he had said this, he said to him, “Follow me.” (John 21: 15 - 19).

Friday May 26th 2023 in the 7th Week of Easter is the feast of St Philip Neri (1515 - 1595). Italian Priest. 

St Philip Neri was an extraordinary priest filled with the Holy Spirit and ecstatic joy. He founded the Congregation of the Oratory, the religious community of St John Henry Newman.

 He converted thousands through the Sacrament of Reconciliation. He was a great catechist and spiritual director. He was noted for his joyful and cheerful disposition which attracted thousands to him.

 Our key Scripture for today recalls the triple denials of Peter.  

After the Resurrection, Jesus met the Apostles on the shores of Lake Tiberius. Jesus offered Peter the opportunity for complete reconciliation.

 Peter confirmed three times that he loves Jesus dearly. Jesus confirmed Peter's leadership of the Church. "Feed my lamb."

What if Jesus asks us: Do you love me more than your family? Do you love me more than your country? Consider carefully how you respond to the Lord. Peter was very presumptuous before the Passion of Christ to claim that he loved Jesus more than anything in the world.

Our love for Jesus may not be perfect. But this love can grow through our openness to receive the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit. The highest proof of love is for a man to lay down his life for his friends.  

"Lord Jesus, I present myself before Thy Eucharistic Face today, placing myself in spirit close to that tabernacle in the world, where Thou art most forsaken, most ignored, and most forgotten. Since Thou hast asked me for it, I offer Thee my heart, the heart of a priest, to keep company with Thy priestly and Eucharistic Sacred Heart. I adore Thee in a spirit of reparation for all the priests of the Church, but especially for those who never, or hardly ever, stop in Thy presence, there to put down their burdens, and to receive from Thee new strength, new lights, new capacities to love, to pardon, and to bless. I do not want to leave this tabernacle today."  (IN SINU JESU).

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