St. John of the Cross

Friar & Doctor of the Church
Feast day: 14December
John of the Cross depicted at the Great Courtyard in Aylesford Priory

John was born at Fontiveros in Spain about 1542. He entered the a Carmelites and with the permission of his superiors began to live a stricter life. Later he was persuaded by St. Teresa to begin, together with some others, the Disclaced reform within the Carmelite friars; this cost him much hard work and many trials. He died in Ubeda in 1591, outstanding in holiness and wisdom, to which his many spiritual writings give eloquent witness. His writings were first published in 1618.
After his death the reform he introduced within the friars eventually separated from the Carmelite Order to become the Order of Discalced Carmelite Friars.
John was canonised in 1726, and declared a Doctor of the Church in 1926.

To read a catechesis on John of the Cross given by Pope Benedict XVI in 2011 please click here.

Let us pray
you endowed St. John of the Cross
with a spirit of self-denial and love of the cross.
By following his example
may we come to the eternal vision of your glory.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.

John of the Cross depicted in an icon written by
the Carmelite nuns of Ravenna, in York Carmelite Friary