St. John, the Apostle and Evangelist, the beloved disciple of Christ and, after the Most Holy Virgin Theotokos, the singular son of the Cross of Christ, was relegated to the island of Patmos.

There he suffered many things for the Faith of Christ, but was consoled in the same place by God with many celestial and divine revelations.

For, as St Paul says:  As there has abounded in us the sufferings of Christ, so also through Christ abound our consolations.

Again, According to the number of my sorrows in my heart, Thy consolations have made my soul rejoice.

St. John had rested upon the breast of the Lord during the Last Supper, and had chosen the best part, as Mary had done, which would not be taken from him.

With singular effort he had always been intent, after the Ascension of Christ the Lord into Heaven, upon divine contemplations.

In the time of tribulation he used to employ himself more vehemently with divine things; for this was the custom of the Saints.

At that time St. John, enkindled by a more ardent flame, was rapt unto God, and driven above by certain, seraphic ardors.

He began also to be overflowed more abundantly that usual and much more copiously with the sweetness of divine contemplation, and to feel more accumulatively the gifts of heavenly emissions.

God the Father of mercies, and the God of all consolation, who consoles us in our every tribulation had consoled him, just as once He did to Jacob, the Patriarch, with the vision of the heavenly Staircase, to Moses with the divine apparition in the burning bush, to the three youths in the ardent furnace with angelic consolation and heavenly refreshment.

He consoled St. Paul, whom for the sake of consolation, He snatched up to the third heaven, unto Paradise itself, in an ineffable manner with the vision of celestial glory.

Now in like manner He consoled St. John in many ways.  Often, with Heaven unbolted, He showed him, just as He had done to St. Stephen, the glory of Paradise, the glory of Christ, the glory of God.

Often He rendered him glad with the vision and locution of the Angels, and steeped him in great joy.

Often from the sublimity of the heavens, the most sweet Savior appeared to him.

Often he was deigned even with the vision of the glory of the Father.

O happy St. John, thrice and four times blessed, with the gift of divine charity!

Because Jesus loved him.

Lawrence of Brindisi (1559-1619): On the Vision of St. John, the Evangelist, 1.