MEMORIAL: DECEMBER 14
St. John of the Cross was born in the 16th century to a poor family. He was educated at a school for the poor run by a religious order. St. John himself would join the Carmelite Order, would become a biblical scholar, and was known for his contemplative prayer. St. John would meet St. Teresa of Avila who convinced St. John to join her reform of the Carmelites. St. John did and would eventually become her spiritual director.
St. John was put on house arrest and beaten for nine months when he would not return to his original order even though the papal nuncio had given him permission to be with St. Theresa’s reform. After he escaped house arrest, the Pope formally announced that St. John and those who had joined the reform could remain and did not have to return to their order. St. John of the Cross soon died after that at the age of 49. He is the patron saint of mystics and contemplation.