The month of Mary: A Marian Month
Saint of the day:
Saint Philip Neri, priest
Saint Philip Neri's Story
St. Philip Neri Florence, Italy (1515–1595) Beatified: 1615 Canonized:
1622 Patron: Rome Feast day: May 26 A young man born and raised into wealth, Philip Neri gave it all up at the age of 17 when he left home and chose to serve the Lord rather than pursue a career in business. Philip went to Rome and found the city in great physical and spiritual deterioration. There were many slums, and children of the city often ran amok. Suffering from the ill effects of the Renaissance, the city of Rome saw a decline in papal authority and in the education and sense of loyalty of the clergy. Philip committed himself to the re-evangelization of the city. He began with the youth. Philip established pilgrimages for the children during the middle of the day, when they were most likely to get into mischief. He took the children to the seven churches of the city, talking to them all the way. Eventually, the children began to confide in Philip. The practice of the pilgrimages to the seven churches is still followed today, especially on Holy Thursday, with the visits to seven repositories. (Repositories are temporary mini-chapels where a smaller tabernacle is used to keep the Blessed Sacrament after the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday evening until the Easter vigil on Holy Saturday evening, thus leaving the main tabernacle in the church empty.) Philip also reached out to young businessmen, offering weekly informal talks on theology and religion, which eventually led to the men staying for prayers. The gatherings were moved to a larger facility to accommodate the growing number of attendees.
After his ordination into the priesthood, Philip remained a champion of the Catholic faith, becoming an instrument for many to return to the sacraments and the Church. He instituted the devotion known as Forty Hours, in which the Blessed Sacrament is exposed on the altar of a church for 40 hours while continuous prayer is made. This devotion to the Holy Eucharist is based on the 40 hours Jesus spent in the tomb from his death on Good Friday until his Resurrection on Easter Sunday. Some parishes in the diocese are assigned a 3-day (40-hour) time slot on the calendar every year where the Blessed Sacrament is exposed on the altar for public adoration. He also established a group of priests, known as the Oratorians, for which liturgy and youth conferences were a hallmark. Philip died in 1595. Four years later, his body was exposed and was found to be in good condition despite damp conditions. His body was embalmed in 1602, when it was moved to the new Oratorian Church, or Chiesa Nuova, where it still rests today. In 1622, Pope Gregory XV canonized St. Philip Neri and gave him the title “The Apostle of Rome.”
St Philip Neri
(d. 1595, Rome, Italy) (Relics: Rome, Italy)
(The New Church)
Via del Governo Vecchio 134
*This church is located along the Corso Vittorio Emanuele.
*The body of St Philip Neri is enshrined in the left transept of this church. His private rooms can be visited on certain days of the week.
They are located in the right wall of the left transept. St Philip Neri spent the last 12 years of his life at Chiesa Nuova.
*In 1597 this church received the skulls of Saints Nereus and Achilleus.
They rest within reliquaries in the sacristy and are sometimes brought out for public veneration on May 12th.
*The additional remains of Saints Nereus and Achilleus are said to rest within a porphyry urn under the main altar of this church. In 1870 they were stolen from the church of Santi Nereo e Achilleo; however, they were later recovered and are now said to rest here.
Feasts in Brooklyn and Italy
What to eat....
Fried Zucchini, Zucchini flowers, & Blood Orange Sangria
Blood Orange Sangria
1 lemongrass stalk, tough outer layer removed, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 cups dry Riesling
2 cups fresh blood orange juice
6 tablespoons fresh grapefruit juice
¼ cup fresh lime juice
2 cups Champagne or sparkling wine
Blood orange wheels
Muddle lemongrass and lemon juice in a pitcher. Stir in Riesling and blood orange, grapefruit, and lime juices. Chill at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours; strain into a clean pitcher.
Pour ¾ cup citrus mixture into each ice-filled wine glass; add ¼ cup Champagne. Garnish with blood orange wheels.