Friday, November 08, 2002

St. Philip Post- Part Eight

Some Setbacks to Ministry

Philip endured various types of problems affecting his ministry. Some were relatively minor, such as the two unfriendly sacristans he had to put up with early on, who gave him the worst vestments, hid the tabernacle key from him, and created other petty annoyances. Some were much more serious, as when Cardinal Rosario of the Holy Office temporarily forbade Philip to hear confessions or hold the Visit to the Seven Churches, and accused him of attempting to form a new sect. Through it all, Philip remained patient and obedient, silencing his followers when they criticized those who were against him. Despite the various difficulties, the Oratory continued to take form. One major turning point occurred when Philip was asked to take over the ministry at San Giovanni dei Fiorentini, the church in Rome that was built by, and ministered to, Florentine expatriates. Philip agreed to help, though only because a Florentine delegation visited the Holy Father and requested that he indicate that Philip was to undertake this. Philip acquiesced, but did not leave San Girolamo himself. Instead he sent several of his young followers there, after they had been ordained. This small community lived at San Giovanni for ten years, living lives of prayer and service of many types. However, a member joined the community there who did not live peaceably with the others. After great deliberation, and Philip's own repeated intervention, he was expelled. He then went about spreading lies about the community,and, incredibly, managed to get the trustees of San Giovanni on his side, with the exception of one man. This one loyal trustee was all that kept the Oratorians from being
thrown out of San Giovanni.

St. Philip Neri Quotes:
"He who wishes to be wise without true Wisdom, or saved without the Savior, is not well, but sick-is not wise, but a fool."
"Nothing unites the soul to God more closely, or breeds contempt of the world sooner, than being harassed and
"We ought to pray to God persistently to increase in us every day the light and heat of his goodness."
"We ought to remember what Christ said, that not he who begins, but he that perseveres to the end, shall be saved."


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