Courtesy of Susan Casey
Susan Casey, the editor-in-chief of O, The Oprah Magazine, traveled to the Casa to experience John of God for herself. Walking into it as a neutral journalist, she says she was driven first and foremost by curiosity.
"If there is one case of healing...if there is even one instance of the thousands we've heard about, then really, what's going on?" Susan says.
On the day Susan visited, she says she saw thousands of people lined up, all hoping for a miracle.
"There's this intense sense of hope from people," Susan says. "If you've been told you don't have another chance—[if] the doctor has said, 'We can't do anything more for you'—and you come here, and you've been told this man can potentially create a miracle for you...that's some heavy stuff. I felt that and I was trying to stay very open to it, but it often was overwhelming."
Susan witnessed some physical surgeries while she was there, including an eye scraping—a procedure where John of God uses a knife to scrape the eyeball. Susan says she watched John of God perform this surgery on a woman while she was there and, to her surprise, the woman was completely calm the entire time.
"Even if it doesn't hurt and skeptics say, 'Oh, you know, if you don't touch the cornea, it doesn't hurt.' But come on, if somebody comes at you with a knife in your eye, you're going to flinch. And there was just no flinching," Susan says.