St. Philip Neri

St. Philip Neri
Saint Philip Neri was born in Florence in 1515. He was one of four children of Francesco Neri. His mother died while he was very young and her place was filled by a capable stepmother. From birth Neri was ready and willing to be taught. He was a dutiful, attractive, popular and cheerful boy who everyone knew. After his childhood, at age 18, he was sent to live with a relative, who was to make Neri his apprentice and heir. Soon after he arrived, he had a mystical experience that radically changed his life. After thanking his relative for this opportunity, Neri set out for Rome with no money and no plan, trusting entirely to God?s providence. The city that they arrived in, Rome, was full of starving people; Neri was just another mouth to feed. In Rome he found shelter under the roof of a former Florentine, a customs official, who offered him an attic and the bare necessities of life. In return for these great deeds, Phillip gave lessons to his two small sons. With this tutoring the two boys, they improved rapidly in all respects.

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