Roberts Liardon tells us that the last time he preached in the cathedral was February 6, 1564. His last attendance was the Easter service, where he received Communion from Beza, his dear friend. When April came, Calvin bid farewell to the council and the ministers in a letter recounting his goals, his struggles, and his faults. He dictated with great composure, stating, “My sins have always displeased me and the fear of God has been in my heart.”
He also had letters written to his closest friends, calling Farel his best one. He asked Farel to always remember their friendship and what they did together in the ministry. He reminded Farel that a reward would be waiting for them both in heaven.
By the middle of May, Calvin’s health was depleted. He was near death and in a coma when those present in the room began to lament over what would happen when he died. Without opening his eyes, Calvin told them if they would look to the Lord, they wouldn’t have to worry about it.
Roberts Liardon tells us after that, Calvin never spoke to another person; his voice was heard only in prayer. On May 27, 1564, at the age of fifty-four, Calvin departed this life and went to meet the Lord. His close friend Beza was present at his death. Of the event, he wrote, “On that day, with the setting sun, the brightest light that was in the world for the guidance of God’s church, was taken back to heaven.”
The next day, Calvin’s body, which had been an invincible physique standing in the face of error and deception, was wrapped in a simple shroud and placed in a wooden box. He was buried in an unmarked grave in a common cemetery. To this day, as executed by Calvin’s last wishes, no one knows where the great Reformer is buried. His cause and goal was always to point to Jesus Christ; in his death, he wanted nothing less.