"Chicano writers from El Paso are the most progressive, open-minded, far-reaching, and inclusive writers of them all."

Octavio Romano

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

St. John of God: Patron Saint of Printers, Booksellers, Publishers

St. John of God
Patron Saint of Printers, Publishers, Booksellers
After spending some time in North Africa caring for an exiled family all of whom got sick while there, St. John of God returned to Spain where he began spending his time reading spiritual books. Loving books so much, he became a book peddler and went town to town selling book. Later, in Granada, he sold books from a little shop, thus becoming the patron saint of printers, publishers, and booksellers. 

He is also the patron saint of firefighters because when the royal hospital where was working caught fire and was in danger of burning down, he went in, saved all the patients, threw out all the pillows and sheets, and then, subsequently, took and acts and tried to sever the burning part the hospital building from another part which the building was attached. The building collapsed, and just then the onlookers through he was dead, he rose from the ashes.

Before all of this, he had once served in the army and took part in the revelry of the troops in pillaging, drinking, and other vice. Of course, he later repented, but he is also the patron saint of alcoholics. For the many people he nursed back to health, he is the patron saint of nurses.

So thank a nurse, fireman/woman (unless a Bradburian one), bookseller, book publishers, printer today.

Celebrated March 8 or 9 depending on who you talk to.

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