John Paul II Training Center For The New Evangelization
What is the purpose of life?
To receive and reflect the Divine Mercy.
We believe that the purpose which drove the life of our Savior on this earth was - Mercy. Therefore, the purpose which should be the driving force behind a Catholic’s life is to receive and reflect the Divine Mercy. Mercy is at once the motivating force and end result of Catholic evangelization (II Corinthians 5:14). The wisdom of the Church is revealed through the canonization of specific saints at specific periods in the history of the world. At a time in history when we are faced with events that incite man to anger, vengeance, and hate, which end in hopelessness, the Church has presented us with the Mercy Saints as an alternative. It is through the Divine Mercy that people will be reconciled to God and to each other. A Mercy Training Center is proposed primarily as a means of helping proclaim the unfathomable Mercy of God: to encourage Catholics and draw back “stray Catholic sheep.” We seek to live and proclaim a Mercy Driven Life. The Mercy Saints help us to accomplish our task since the driving force in their lives is Mercy.
Before we continue our discussion of the mercy patron saints, we would like to draw your attention to a FDA Warning regarding the IVC Filter, a medical device recommended for people who are at risk for DVT and can not be treated with blood thinning medications.
The FDA has warned that recipients of an IVC filter could suffer from a number of serious side effects such as: IVC filter migration, fracture, filter components that puncture internal organs or lodge in blood vessels, tilting or moving of the IVC filter from its original position, among others. The result could be:
- Pulmonary embolism,
- Compromised respiration
It is important to learn all the facts about the potential life-threatening side effects of the IVC filter. Already there are numerous lawsuits that claim in certain IVC filters there are design defects, manufacturing defects, along with breach of implied warranty, and negligence. If you or a loved one has suffered negative consequences from an IVC filter, contact an IVC attorney as soon as possible to discuss your options. We pray for your safe recovery.
Mercy-Evangelization Patron Saints
The Apostle John, John Eude, Claude de la Colombiere, Philip Neri, Theresa of Avila, Ignatius of Loyola, Isadore the Laborer, Francis Xavier, Francis of Assisi, Francis of Sales, the Apostle John, Vincent Ferrier, Margaret-Marie Alacoque, Theresa of the Child Jesus, Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Sr. Faustina, Maximillian Kolbe, Radagonde...we also rely on the prayers of Pierre Goursat (founder of the Emmanuel Community), Marthe Robin, and John Paul II. A Google search of each or any of these personalities would be inspiring.
One of the Mercy Saints we have been drawn to is St. Philip Neri. In fact, the Mercy Center in Brazil is calling one of our centers: The Philip Neri Training Center.
Why the emphasis on ‘Saint Philip Neri?’
Only two people in the history of the Church have the honor of being named The Apostle of Rome. The first was Saint Peter, the second, Saint Philip Neri. Every student of the New Evangelization should study closely the life, and spirituality, and evangelistic methods of Saint Philip Neri. In the 16th century, while The Protestant Reformation was trying to empty the Catholic Church, he became the Apostle of joy and second Apostle of Rome in the evangelization of the Church from within. He did it, not by attacking the protestant reformers, but by emanating the irresistible beauty of the Catholic Church. See the book: Philip Neri, The Fire of Joy, by Paul Turks.
The choice of Philip Neri is also linked to his burning heart for evangelization, and his life and practical method of evangelization through question-answer spiritual conversations. For Philip, crisis in the Church meant opportunity rather than catastrophe. His love for the Eucharist and huge heart drove him into the streets with a gospel of Mercy. (He is also the patron saint of commandos.) With style and uncommon originality, he drew the “multidudes” and the clergy back to God and the Church. From the poor to the nobility, all were drawn to the Merciful Heart of God in Philip. Waiting inside the parishes would never bring them back. His genius was to go out daily into the streets and initiate spiritual conversations (ragionamento) to draw stray and sick sheep back to the Shepherd. May Saint Philip Neri inspire and accompany us in all forms of the New Evangelization.
Pope John Paul II’s high estimation of the place of St. Philip Neri in the success of the New Evangelization can be found in the Appendix of perhaps the best book currently available in English on the Saint: The Apostle of Joy.
The Big Five
In studying the life of St. Philip Neri, we realized he was closely linked in Mercy Evangelization with four other saints, as explained in the following from “Search for the Beautiful Garden.”
Danelle and I are in the process of visiting a part of the Garden that has 5 very beautiful “exotic” flowers. They became available for worldwide distribution March 12, 1622. The Head Gardener at that time was Pope Gregory XV. The five “orchids” are Isador the Farmer, Ignatius of Loyola, Francis Xavier, Teresa of Avila, and a particularly beautiful flower named Philip Neri. That all five flowers made their entry into the bed of the canonized flowers on the same day is extraordinary, almost as extraordinary as their lives and teachings. The Head Gardener and his counselors always have the wisdom of God the Owner to canonize flowers at just the right moment. It is rare, indeed, that flowers of this quality are presented as prayer flowers at the same time in the history of the world, and of the Garden.
It is like a treasure hunt in the Garden to find rare flowers and figure out why the Owner chose to plant them when and where He planted them in the history of the Garden. In the case of the “Big Five” as we call them, we feel that the world has yet to benefit wholly from the powerful beauty of these five. Perhaps the secret is making a “bouquet” of all five at once.
Why were they canonized the same day? What is it that makes them individually and corporately so important for this century? Find the answers to those questions and perhaps the Owner of the Garden will give you a large whiff of the perfume of the graces linked to each flower of the “Big Five.” Here are some clues to use in the search. There is an individual spirituality of each of the flowers which is enhanced by the other four. The perfume of its spirituality encourages many who live in the Garden. The only scent better than that of one flower is that of two or three or four or all five together. That’s the fun and that’s the challenge in the Garden. Find out how the perfume of one complements and completes those of the others and you benefit from the discovery.
Some cultures like the fragrance of Saint Ignatius of Loyola better than that of Philip Neri. That’s okay, unless the Head Gardener and the Owner wish to sow the Good News of the Garden in new innovative ways. Some people have overdosed on one perfume for so long that they need a whiff of something new, for a while at least. We want to spread the Good News of the Garden everywhere. We need the help of the fragrances of all the flowers to effectively plant the Garden everywhere.
To find out what qualities are contained in each of the flowers in the “Big Five,” it will take some research. Certain of the flowers have weed-killing capacities that could be effectively used in Garden planting. Certain ones can bring healing of sick plants. Certain ones fertilize the soil. Certain ones have roots that go deep and hold water in the soil even during drought. Certain ones, like Francis Xavier, will grow just about anywhere. Certain ones, like Philip Neri, give you joy just gazing at them. Certain are good in times of Garden storms, like Teresa of Avila. Certain inspire hard labor in the Garden like Isidore the Laborer. They all seem to be good at giving off the fragrance of the love of the Garden everywhere.
The great news is that the archives of gardening are rapidly being put on files that can be accessed on the Internet. In fact, you can simply type “Canonization 1622” and start the treasure hunt. We won’t tell you what we found. It would ruin the search. Perhaps now is the time in the history of the Garden and the world when such flowers as these, old though they seem, may together help the Owner and the Head Gardener make the Garden even more beautiful.