It is especially poignant to be praying for him on this month of the devotion to Holy Souls in Purgatory. We are not comfortable with suffering. In my Protestant past, suffering was akin to punishment for an unconfessed sin. But since becoming Catholic, I have come to appreciate the Church's teaching on redemptive suffering, uniting one's sufferings with the Cross of Christ for the salvation of the world.
One of the comments left at Philip's 'blog talked about the crosses we bear in this life, our appointed Gethsemanes when we are faced with abandoning ourselves to God's will, offering the suffering to God. A reminder that a servant cannot be more than his master.
Philip has a devotion to Fr. Thomas Price, the Tar Heel Apostle, and Fr. Price's Cause for Canonization. One of our diocesan priests, Fr. Tighe, wrote this prayer for both Philip and Fr. Price.
Father Thomas Price...... INTERCEDE for our brother, Philip Gerard Johnson.
Heavenly Father, who desires that the faithful be drawn to the heroic virtue of your Priest Fr. Thomas Price, grant your healing gifts to your son, our brother, Philip Gerard Johnson. We ask this in the Holy Name of your Son, Our Lord, Jesus Christ. Amen!