December 14, 2020

Feast Day of St John of the Cross

“Learn to abide with attention in loving waiting upon God in a state of quiet. Contemplation is nothing else but a secret, peaceful, and loving infusion of God; which, if admitted, will set the soul on fire with a Spirit of love” – St John of the Cross

Today we celebrate the Feast Day of one of our great Carmelite Saints – St John of the Cross. He is one of a few Doctors of the Church.

The following excerpt is from the Universalis website:

He was born in Fontiveros, in Spain, in about 1542. He spent some time as a Carmelite friar before, in 1568, Saint Teresa of Ávila persuaded him to pioneer the reform of the Carmelite order. This was a difficult task and a dangerous one: he suffered imprisonment and severe punishment at the hands of the Church authorities. He died at the monastery of Ubeda in Andalusia on 14 December 1591: the monks there had initially treated him as the worst of sinners, but by the time he died they had recognised his sanctity and his funeral was the occasion of a great outburst of enthusiasm.  His works include two major mystical poems – he is considered one of the great poets of the Spanish language – and detailed commentaries on them and the spiritual truths they convey. He was canonized in 1726 and declared a Doctor of the Church in 1926. See the articles in the Catholic Encyclopaedia and Wikipedia.