Philip Wedding finished his battle with cancer on Easter Sunday. A proud Amarillo native, he was a man of great love, great faith, and great service.
Memorial mass will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m., Saturday, April 17, 2021 at St. Mary’s Catholic Cathedral, with Rev. Scott Raef as celebrant and Rev. Anthony Neush and Rev. Joe Bixenman as concelebrants. A private inurnment will follow at a later date. Masks are required for the service. Arrangements are by Schooler Funeral Home.
Last year, Philip celebrated a quarter of a century of marriage to his wife Catherine. The two of them shared so many interests, a love of travel, and a gift for friendship. They raised their daughter, Rachel together, and they passed on a love of the faith and a shared joy in the ordinary pleasures of life. They had a common profession as educators, but their true vocation was marriage. They packed more life into twenty-five years than many couples who get twice as much time. Philip said he ended life with no regrets, nothing left he wish he had said, and nothing left he was burning to do that he hadn’t already done. His life was steeped in gratitude.
Catherine and Philip came to St. Mary’s as newlyweds, and Philip served the Cathedral as a lector and communion minister. He was a great supporter of the Cathedral choir, and he was pleased to call many diocesan priests his friends. Here in Amarillo, he attended twelve years of Catholic school at St. Mary’s Academy and at Price College. He loved getting to close that circle by teaching at the diocesan high school, Holy Cross Catholic Academy, for the final decade of his life after working eighteen years with AISD.
Another area of service was his twenty-seven years in the US Air Force, retiring as a Colonel. He discovered this calling in the work-study program at White Sands Missile Range while in college. Philip joked that he joined the Air Force to see the world, and then spent his first three assignments in Texas! He was a cryptanalyst (code breaker), and his work eventually took him across the country and around the world. He served in Thailand, Germany, and Japan, on both US coasts, and in Washington, DC, at the Pentagon (Joint Chiefs of Staff).
Originally a math major, Philip and the math department at New Mexico State University came to an early agreement that he should major in Theatre Arts. As a college student, he performed on a USO tour of Japan, and he spent his adult life involved in community theatre. He and Catherine developed a passion for opera, and they were lucky enough to attend performances in many of the world’s great opera houses. He was an avid reader and went along with Catherine’s love of film. Over the years, he enjoyed golf, bridge, and frequent stays at their favorite New Mexico B&B. He loved being “Grandpa” to Grant and Barrett.
Philip supported and took care of Catherine four years ago when she was diagnosed with cancer, and she had the privilege of doing the same for him, especially in his final two years. They took to heart their pledge to love each other “in sickness and in health” and in all the other circumstances of their strong and joyful marriage. Their friends will miss them as a couple.
Philip leaves behind four children, Rachel and Dirk Chapman (and grandsons, Grant and Barrett), Jeep and Brenda Wedding, Charlotte and Jim Pryor, and James and Melinda Wedding.
The Weddings have lent their support to a number of charities and would welcome memorials to Holy Cross Catholic Academy, 4110 S. Bonham St. Amarillo, Texas 79110 or the 24 Hours in the Canyon Cancer Survivorship Center, 6600 Killgore Dr. Ste 100, Amarillo, Texas 79106. They are forever grateful to Philip’s extensive medical team in his final years. He now rejoices in the promises of Easter and the resurrection.