26 May: St. Philip Neri – inflame us with that same fire
Did you know that St. Philip Neri is a co-patron of Rome?
Deus, qui fideles tibi servos
sanctitatis gloria sublimare non desistis,
ut illo nos igne Spiritus Sanctus inflammet,
quo beati Philippi cor mirabiliter penetravit.
Sublimo, according to the thorough Lewis & Short Dictionary, is “to lift up on high, to raise, elevate”. Penetro is, in the first place, “to put, place, or set any thing into any thing”. You might use this verb to describe a person putting his foot inside a house. It can also mean “to betake one’s self” or “go” in some direction. For example, one way to say “to take flight” as in “run away” is se in fugam penetrat. After that, it is “to pierce into any thing; to enter, penetrate any thing”. In a related sense, penetralia are the interior of a place, or the secret places, even a sanctuary or chapel.
O God, who by the glory of sanctity
do not cease not to raise on high
servants faithful to You,
that the Holy Spirit inflame us with that same fire
with which He wondrously entered into Saint Philip’s heart.
We could say “pierced” instead of “enter”, but with fire I think that is the wrong image.
And here is the relic of the praecordium of St. Philip Neri in the chapel in the Oratory in Rome where the saint said Mass. The praecordium is not the heart itself, but it is close!
CURRENT ICEL (2012):
O God, who never cease to bestow the glory of holiness
on the faithful servants you raise up for yourself,
that the Holy Spirit may kindle in us that fire
with which he wonderfully filled
the heart of Saint Philip Neri.
I don’t like that “filled” for penetravit, but you can see how they chose it.
This is my relic of St. Philip.