Saint Teresa wrote of Saint John of the Cross
"I realized that he was a saint, and had always been a saint." Before her was a figure tiny in physical stature, as the world measures, but a towering giant in the Eyes of the Lord. She recognized the same fire burning in him that raged inside of her.
She was fifty-two; he was twenty-five. She, a nun twice his age! He, a young friar with a dream to become a Carthusian hermit. But, as he looked at her, he knew he would do anything she asked of him. And ask she did! She implored him to wait to join the Carthusians until the Lord had given them a Monastery. She continued, he was, at this time and place, to serve the Lord by working change within his Order, as she had begun amongst the nuns of the Carmelite Order.
What could he do? As he later wrote, his was "a heart of one that had fallen in love." He promised he would help and agreed to wait, to join the Carthusians, if it didn't take too long. (Author's note: It remi0nds me of Brother Joseph who came to help our ministry and never left.)
Saint John waited until autumn. He was restless. He wanted to be about his dream! He struggled! Determined to fight the magnetic pull of Teresa on him, he set out toward Salamanca. His journey over, he looked upon the towering magnificence of the University of Salamanca and knew he had to say good-by to all his memories. He would use all he had learned there, but the gnawing inside him, clearly told him he had to return to Medina and his promise to Saint Teresa.
So, back again, in Medina, he meets up with Saint Teresa! She asks him to join her, as she is on her way to found a house in Valladolid for her sisters. She had promised to do this in the hope of rescuing the soul of one Don Bernardino from Purgatory. The first Mass celebrated there, she saw his soul rising to Heaven, and Don Bernardino thanking her for what she had done for him.
This accomplished, she remained in Valladolid for the winter, sending Saint John ahead to Duruelo. He stopped at Avila to pick up a workman. He arrived in Duruelo. The house, Saint Teresa had chosen, that he was supposed to make into a house for religious, was a broken-down shack.
This young man, who had studied in
Salamanca, in one of the finest Universities in the world, who had
enjoyed the company of fresh, young minds and been surrounded by great
thinkers, who'd been cradled in the glory of God he saw evidenced in the
fine churches of Vallodolid, was standing in front of a hovel which,
with God's Mercy would fall apart before he had to enter it. But it did
not fall down.
Reference: Saints and other Powerful Men in the Church see below
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Saint Teresa of Avila DVD
"At last, at last, a daughter of the Church."
The life of Saint Teresa of Avila - taped in Spain
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See her incorrupt arm and heart.
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Bob and Penny have taken 10 of the
most powerful women in the Church of yesterday and today, and shared them in
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Saint Clare of Assisi
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Saints And Other
Down through the ages, men and
women have given their lives to carry out the command of Jesus. Bob
and Penny Lord have tracked the lives of 12 men who have said, Yes!
to Jesus, and dedicated their lives to that Yes!, some at the cost of
their lives. Their biographies parallel the times of crisis in our
Church. Bob and Penny have set their sights on the man and the time in
which he lived. They have started at the beginning of our infant
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Electronic Age, Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen.
spoke to him; he converted, and archenemy of the Christians became Apostle
to Gentile World
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