may 1. Isidora THE SIMPLE, who subsisted on refuse
Isidora is considered to be among the earliest “fools for Christ.” She took the feat of folly upon herself, acting as if she were insane.
DISHRAGS CAN DOUBLE AS VEILS
Isidora veiled her head with an old dishrag. Instead of cooked food, she drank filthy dishwater and ate crumbs left behind on the table cloth. The other nuns treated her with utter contempt, beating her, spitting on her, and smearing her nostrils with mustard, because they considered her to be a demoniac. They relegated Isidora to the lowliest chores. Isadora bore their disdain with meekness and was taken to silence.
POSSESSED OF A HALO
One day, a hermit saint who lived on a remote peak had a vision of an angel, who advised him to journey to the convent and find his superior: a vessel full of God’s grace. The angel said: “She contends with such a multitude, and yet her heart never strays from God. As for you, you sit here, but your mind wanders through cities.” He was said he would identify her by her dishrag veil and “the crown that shines above her head.” For the first time, the hermit saint took leave of his mountain-top cell. When the nuns brought forth “the one from the kitchen” who was said to be possessed by a demon, the hermit saint saw the aforementioned dishrag ringed in light around her head. He gasped and begged for her blessing.
The nuns fell to the hermit saint’s feet and confessed in repentance that they’d treated Isidora with disrespect. Isidora withstood all ridicule and even beatings humbling.
HERMITESS, AT LAST!
Isidora could not bear the adulation she received, and she stole away from the convent to pass her remaining days in a desert hermitage. She only cared about what God thought of her. No one knows where she went, how she lived, or when she died. As one chronicler says: “she lived happily ever after, not in a castle, but as a hermit.”