tuesday 26 May 2020
St Philip Neri (1515 – 1595)
He was born in Florence in 1515. At the age of eighteen he went to Rome, and earned his living as a tutor. He undertook much-needed charitable work among the young men of the city, and started a brotherhood to help the sick poor and pilgrims.
Entrance Antiphon: Rom 5: 5; cf. 8, 11
The love of God has been poured into our hearts through the Spirit of God dwelling within us, alleluia.
O God, who never cease to bestow the glory of holiness on the faithful servants you raise up for yourself, graciously grant 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, one God, for ever and ever.
First reading: Acts 20:17-27
From Miletus Paul sent for the elders of the church of Ephesus. When they arrived he addressed these words to them: ‘You know what my way of life has been ever since the first day I set foot among you in Asia, how I have served the Lord in all humility, with all the sorrows and trials that came to me through the plots of the Jews. I have not hesitated to do anything that would be helpful to you; I have preached to you, and instructed you both in public and in your homes, urging both Jews and Greeks to turn to God and to believe in our Lord Jesus. ‘And now you see me a prisoner already in spirit; I am on my way to Jerusalem, but have no idea what will happen to me there, except that the Holy Spirit, in town after town, has made it clear enough that imprisonment and persecution await me. But life to me is not a thing to waste words on, provided that when I finish my race I have carried out the mission the Lord Jesus gave me – and that was to bear witness to the Good News of God’s grace. ‘I now feel sure that none of you among whom I have gone about proclaiming the kingdom will ever see my face again. And so here and now I swear that my conscience is clear as far as all of you are concerned, for I have without faltering put before you the whole of God’s purpose.’
R/ Kingdoms of the earth, sing to God.
- You poured down, O God, a generous rain: when your people were starved you gave them new life. It was there that your people found a home, prepared in your goodness, O God, for the poor.
- May the Lord be blessed day after day. He bears our burdens, God our saviour. This God of ours is a God who saves. The Lord our God holds the keys of death.
Gospel Acclamation: Jn 14:18
Alleluia, alleluia! I will not leave you orphans, says the Lord; I go, but I will come back to you, and your hearts will be full of joy. Alleluia!
Gospel: John 17:1-11
Jesus raised his eyes to heaven and said: ‘Father, the hour has come: glorify your Son so that your Son may glorify you; and, through the power over all mankind that you have given him, let him give eternal life to all those you have entrusted to him. And eternal life is this: to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. I have glorified you on earth and finished the work that you gave me to do. Now, Father, it is time for you to glorify me with that glory I had with you before ever the world was. I have made your name known to the men you took from the world to give me. They were yours and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. Now at last they know that all you have given me comes indeed from you; for I have given them the teaching you gave to me, and they have truly accepted this, that I came from you, and have believed that it was you who sent me. I pray for them; I am not praying for the world but for those you have given me, because they belong to you: all I have is yours and all you have is mine, and in them I am glorified. I am not in the world any longer, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you.’
Prayer over the Offerings
As we offer you the sacrifice of praise, O Lord, we ask that by the example of Saint Philip Neri we may always give ourselves cheerfully for the glory of your name and the service of our neighbour. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Jn 15: 9
As the Father loves me, so I also love you; remain in my love, alleluia.
Prayer after Communion
Having fed upon these heavenly delights, we pray, O Lord, that in imitation of Saint Philip Neri we may always long for that food by which we truly live. Through Christ our Lord.
The importance of the leadership of elders is evident throughout Paul’s ministry. He appointed elders in each church on his first missionary journey and addressed the holders of this office later. His words form one of the most touching passages in the New Testament. Paul was a tough man in many respects but he was also a very emotional one as the first reading shows. Jesus sent Paul out to preach and plant churches, and Paul obeyed with intensity, investing to the point of tears. And Paul doesn’t regret these tears. He speaks of them as a proof of his ministry. Some of us don’t have a bag of achievements to bring to Christ. We only have failures. We feel so inadequate and disqualified. We wonder how God could ever love us. But once we expose ourselves to God as we really are, he won’t say no to us because he has already said yes to Christ.