Saint Philip Neri

Today, May 26th, is the Feast of St. Philip Neri, the great “apostle of Rome”. I went to his tomb today and prayed for you all.

If you don’t have a devotion to this great saint, you really should. Read about him here.

This 16th-century standee is considered to be the most accurate portrait of the saint that we have. More information in the caption:

There was a devotion that involved visiting seven churches that he liked to participate in, and the people loved having him present for it. When sickness made it impossible for him to continue his participation, they made this standee of him to take with them. You can see a bit of his great self-deprecating sense of humor in how they have him depicted.

There was a devotion that involved visiting seven churches that he liked to participate in, and the people loved having him present for it. When sickness made it impossible for him to continue his participation, they made this standee of him to take with them. You can see a bit of his great self-deprecating sense of humor in how they have him depicted.

First things second: here is the church in which his tomb is located, one of the most beautiful churches in Rome. It is called Santa Maria in Vallicella (Our Lady in the Little Valley), and is not too far from the Tiber River, in the area where you cross over to go to the Vatican:

There are beautiful traditional Marian inscriptions (in Latin) on the facade and a lovely bronze sculpture of Our Lady over the central doorway.

There are beautiful traditional Marian inscriptions (in Latin) on the facade and a lovely bronze sculpture of Our Lady over the central doorway.

Here is a view that you might have when you visit in the afternoon, like I did:

The main ceiling fresco depicts the miracle that happened when the church was being built, and the ceiling almost collapsed because the central beam was not properly supported: Our Lady was seen holding it up until the workers could fix it.

The main ceiling fresco depicts the miracle that happened when the church was being built, and the ceiling almost collapsed because the central beam was not properly supported: Our Lady was seen holding it up until the workers could fix it.

To the left of the main sanctuary is the chapel of St. Philip Neri, where his body is under the altar:

It's nice to go on his feast day because they have it lit up well. There were a lot of people praying there.

It’s nice to go on his feast day because they have it lit up well. There were a lot of people praying there.

Here is my view when I looked up during some moments of prayer that I spent there in the pews afterwards:

Note the festal drapes that they have on the pilasters and columns for the feast day.

Note the festal drapes that they have on the pilasters and columns for the feast day.

They also had a painted paschal candle there, but that will wait for another post. I took many more photos of his rooms and so forth, but all of it will have to wait for another day.

St. Philip Neri, pray for us!

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