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Italian Dominican theologian Saint Thomas Aquinas was the foremost medieval Scholasticist and father of the Thomistic school of theology.
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While he was still writing prolifically, his works began to suffer in quality.
During the Feast of St. Nicolas in 1273, St. Thomas Aquinas had a mystical vision that made writing seem unimportant to him. At Mass, he heard a voice coming from a crucifix tell him, “Thou hast written well of me, Thomas; what reward wilt thou have?” to which St. Thomas Aquinas replied, “None other than Thyself, Lord.”
When St. Thomas Aquinas' confessor,
Father Reginald of Piperno, urged him to keep writing, Aquinas replied, “I can do no more. Such secrets have been revealed to me that all I have written now appears to be of little value.” St. Thomas Aquinas never wrote again.
In January of 1274, St. Thomas Aquinas left for Lyon, France, on foot to serve on the Second Council, but never made it there. Along the way he fell ill at the Cistercian monastery of Fossanova, Italy. The monks wanted St. Thomas Aquinas to stay at the castle, but, sensing his death was near, Aquinas preferred to remain at the monastery, saying, “If the Lord wishes to take me away it is better that I be found in a religious house, than in the dwelling of a layperson.”
On his deathbed, St. Thomas Aquinas uttered his last words to the Cistercian monks who had so graciously attended him: “This is my rest forever and ever: here will I dwell for I have chosen it.” (Psalm 131:14) “The Universal Teacher” died at the monastery of Fossanova on March 7, 1274, and was later canonized by Pope John XXII in 1323.
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