Prayer to St. John of God
Saint John of God,
I honor you as the Patron of the Sick,
especially of those who are afflicted by heart disease.
I choose you to be my patron and protector in my
To you I entrust my soul, my body, all my spiritual
and temporal interests, as well as those of the
sick throughout the world.
To you I consecrate my mind,
that in all things it may be enlightened by faith
above all in accepting my Cross as a blessing
from God; my heart, that you keep it pure and
fill it with the love for Jesus and Mary that
burned in your heart; my will, like yours,
it may always be one with the Will of God.
About St. John of God
John Ciudad was born in Portugal in 1495. At the age of eight, he ran away to Spain with a visiting priest and was left to work as a shepherd with a family willing to care for him. In 1522, he joined the Spanish army and a life of drinking and gambling. Fourteen years later he left the military and worked as a shepherd while contemplating his life. He searched for his parents only to find that they had died. Unsettled, he decided to go to Africa to ransom Christians captured by the Moors. On the ship he met a family that he served for a while but soon decided to move back to Spain. He opened a religious bookshop and sold items for little profit to try to spread the faith. Then, one day during a festival in the town, John heard Blessed John Avila speak. He was so filled with deep sorrow for his past that he gave away all his books and all that he owned and ran around the city beating his chest screaming and calling upon God’s forgiveness.
The people of the town thought he had gone crazy and had him committed to a mental hospital. John of Avila told John to stop all the open repentance and begin finding positive ways to atone for his past sins. John of God began caring for the people in the hospital. Upon his release, he began working in the streets of Granada caring for the sick and the poor.
At night, he sold firewood to help pay for food and supplies. He soon found a house for rent and opened a small hospital. He begged for money for beds and medicine. Priests and doctors donated their time and soon thereafter other men joined John in his ministry, forming the Brothers Hospitallers of St. John of God. Stories spread of his unselfish devotion to the poor, the sick and the helpless. He died in 1550 after trying to save a person from drowning.
Feast Day: March 8
Patron Saint of: Booksellers, hospital workers, printers, the sick.