After five years at Scalan, he moved to Preshome, near Buckie, a missionary post, but also an administrative centre for the Church, one of the places used by the bishops for their meetings. He was there when they gathered to discuss the Scotch College in Madrid, which had fallen on hard times. Two priests had already turned down the suggestion of going to find out what the situation was. It sounded as if the bishops were about to ask the English rector in Valladolid, Philip Perry, to speak on our behalf to the Spanish Authorities. John Geddes insisted with Bishop James Grant that a Scot had to go out to speak for us. Bishop Grant asked: “So you would abandon souls in Scotland to seek gold in Spain?” John Geddes retorted: “I have not the slightest desire to go to Spain, but someone ought to seek gold in Spain in order to help souls in Scotland!” Not much later he was taking the road to Madrid, where he rescued the college and re-established it in the northern city of Valladolid in the old Jesuit 'Colegio de San Ambrosio' (College of St. Ambrose). He was 34 years old.