Quote of the day, 12 December: Iain Matthew, O.C.D.

While [John’s] body was succumbing to erysipelas, his heart and reputation were still being battered. The prior of the community of Ubeda where he had gone for treatment had a grudge against him, and made his dying quite difficult. Medicines were regarded as a financial drain, putrid bandages were not to be washed, visits were curtailed . . . John’s nurse, Bernardo, captures it with a modern phrase: ‘It was just incredible what was taking place!’

Finally, Bernardo himself was forbidden to nurse John. Whatever about the sick man’s patience, Bernardo had had enough: he wrote in complaint, higher authorities intervened and matters improved in time for John to die in a community at peace.

Iain Matthew, O.C.D.

The Impact of God: Chapter 12, Healing Darkness

Matthew, I 1995, The Impact of God: Soundings from St. John of the Cross, Hodder and Stoughton, Ltd, London.

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