Mary Mother of GOD
Et álibi aliórum plurimórum sanctórum Mártyrum et Confessórum, atque sanctárum Vírginum.
And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.
Пресвятая Богородице спаси нас!  (Santíssima Mãe de Deus, salva-nos!)

August 20 - Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, Doctor of the Church (d. 1152) 
 
Mary is the necessary ‘star’ for us to ‘navigate’ in this world
Saint Bernard knows that only God's strength is our force.
His admiration for the divine plan of salvation focuses on the mystery of the Incarnate Word.

However, for God and humankind to achieve union, the Lord has provided for the singular contribution of a creature—the Virgin Mary. This made Saint Bernard say: "Let us strive to go to the Savior by the same route he followed to come to us…" and "When we think about her, we do not stray."

The major importance of Mary derives from the fact that she helped to bring humanity closer to God and to make God more accessible to humanity. Mary's greatness also lies in terms of personal and moral responsibility in the answer—so crucial for the rest of humanity—that Mary gave on the day of the Annunciation.

Mary is the necessary ‘star’ for us to ‘navigate’ in this world.

Saint Bernard’s thought is not really new—he borrowed this thought from the Fathers of the Church. (He is sometimes considered the last Father of the Church). His enthusiastic style earned him the title of Champion of Our Lady.  
The Mary of Nazareth Team

CAUSES OF SAINTS

A wonderful story
 
In 1134, three French knights participating in the crusades were taken prisoner by the Sultan of Egypt. Their captors tried to make them apostatize. The sultan even sent his very attractive daughter Ismenia to convince them. But the three men evangelized her. Converted, Ismenia asked the knights to carve for her the image of the Virgin Mary.

Overnight the knights made a small statuette of black wood representing the Madonna holding her son standing on her knees. When they woke up, the statue was shining with a dazzling, miraculous light.

The next night Our Lady appeared to Ismenia and said:
"I have prayed to my Son and Lord on your behalf. He has deigned to choose you as his faithful and beloved servant. You will save my three devoted knights from prison, and will be baptized ... and later I will receive you forever in my paradise."

The knights set out upon their escape. They crossed the Nile, then fell asleep from exhaustion. To their amazement, they woke up in Liance, France! The three crusaders built a shrine there in thanksgiving. The princess Ismenia solemnly renounced the Koran, and received the Christian name of Mary at her baptism on September 8, 1134. In the 15th century, Liance changed its name to Liesse, which means "Joy" in French,
since the Virgin Mary filled the pilgrims with so much joy at her shrine!


Our Bartholomew Family Prayer List  Here

Acts of the Apostles

Nine First Fridays Devotion to the Sacred Heart From the writings of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

How do I start the Five First Saturdays?

Mary Mother of GOD 15 Promises of the Virgin Mary to those who recite the Rosary


           
         

                                                                             
       
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The saints are a “cloud of witnesses over our head”, 
showing us life of Christian perfection is possible.


It is a great poverty that a child must die so that you may live as you wish -- Mother Teresa

 Saving babies, healing moms and dads, 'The Gospel of Life'


On the Fifth day of the Afterfeast of the Dormition
 August 20 – Saint Bernard of Clairvaux, Doctor of the Church (d. 1152)
1146 B. C. Samuel, dedicated to service of the Lord before birth, prophet; the 15th and last of the Judges of Israel
During Papacy of St. Theophilus. [COPTIC] Commemoration of the Great Sign, the Lord had Manifested
  75 St. Amadour witness martyrdom of Sts. Peter Paul  miracles at the site
310 St. Lucius martyr with companions in Cyrene, Ptolemais, Africa; converted governor Dignian
362 St. Heliodorus Persian martyr King Shapur II deported 9,000 Christians 300 for torture and death.
 470 St. Maximus Abbot Founder a disciple of St. Martin of Tours
 
651 St  Oswin, Martyr;  a monastery at Gilling; incursion prayers over the body of St Oswin

 852 St. Leovigild and Christopher Martyrs of Cordoba, Spain
 960 St. Edbert King of Northumbria became a Benedictine monk
1148 WILLIAM OF ST. THIERRY: CANTOR OF LOVE
1153 St. Bernard of Clairvaux Abbot Doctor of the Church eminently endowed with the gift of miracles
1866 Bd Mary De Mattias, Virgin, Foundress of The Sisters Adorers of The Precious Blood
1912 1890 Wilhelm und Katharina Booth Anglikanische Kirche: 20. August

Mary's Divine Motherhood
Called in the Gospel "the Mother of Jesus," Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as "the Mother of my Lord" (Lk 1:43; Jn 2:1; 19:25; cf. Mt 13:55; et al.). In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh,
was none other than the Father's eternal Son, the second person of the Holy Trinity.
Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly "Mother of God" (Theotokos).

Catechism of the Catholic Church 495, quoting the Council of Ephesus (431): DS 251.


August 20 - Saint Bernard of Clairvaux - Doctor of the Church (d. 1153)  "Full of Heavenly Dew
Now, O Mother of Mercy, the moon, humbly prostrate at your feet, devoutly implores you,
her Mediatrix with the Sun of justice, begging you by the most sincere feeling of her heart that in your light she might see light and merit the grace of your Son by your procuring.

For he truly loves you more than all others and has adorned you, dressing you in a robe of glory (cf. Sir 6:31) and placing a crown of beauty on your head." (cf. Ezek 16:12).
"You are full of graces (cf. Lk 1:28), full of heavenly dew, resting upon your beloved’s shoulder, sated with delight," (cf. Song 8/5).

Saint Bernard of Clairvaux Excerpt from Sermo infra Octavam Assumptionis 14-15; PL 183, 437-38, The Sword of Simeon

Jesus Christ said, " This is my Body. " You say, " No. It is not His Body!" Who am I to believe?
I prefer to believe Jesus Christ.  
-- St. Dominic Barberi

From the House of the Holy Trinity, that is, the Virgin Mary
Thus, this Wisdom who was God's wisdom, and was God, and who came to us from the bosom of the Father, built himself a house, I am referring to the Virgin Mary his mother, and in that house he carved seven columns.

What do I mean by 'he carved seven columns in that house?' I mean that he prepared it by faith and works to be a dwelling worthy of himself. The number three is the number of the faith because of the Holy Trinity, and the number four is the number of morals because of the four principal virtues.

I say therefore, that the Holy Trinity dwelled in the blessed Mary, through the presence of her majesty, although she received only the Son when he took on the human nature: and I know it from the same heavenly messenger who revealed to her in these terms the secret of this mystery: Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee... (Luke 1: 28)

Saint Bernard, Fifty-Second Sermon.
Of the House of Divine Wisdom, that is, the Virgin Mary

 
Pope Encourages Personal Relationship With Christ Points to Example of St. Bernard of Clairvaux
VATICAN CITY, OCT. 21, 2009 (Zenit.org).
Only Jesus is "joy to the heart," says Benedict XVI, citing words from St. Bernard of Clairvaux.  The Pope reflected today during the general audience on this 12th century saint, highlighting his personal relationship with Christ.

According to the Holy Father, "in a more than decisive way, the abbot of Clairvaux configures the theologian to the contemplative and the mystic. Only Jesus -- insists Bernard in face of the complex dialectical reasoning of his time -- only Jesus is 'honey to the mouth, song to the ear, joy to the heart.'" Ideas like this one, noted the Pontiff, won the saint his traditional title: "Doctor Mellifluus: his praise of Jesus Christ, in fact, 'runs like honey.'" Benedict XVI observed that "the abbot of Clairvaux does not tire of repeating that only one name counts, that of Jesus the Nazarene. 'Arid is all food of the soul,' [the saint] confesses, 'if it is not sprinkled with this oil; insipid, if it is not seasoned with this salt. What is written has no flavor for me, if I have not read Jesus.' And he concludes: 'When you discuss or speak, nothing has flavor for me, if I have not heard resound the name of Jesus.'"
The Pope said Bernard's concept of true knowledge of God consists in a "personal, profound experience of Jesus Christ and of his love.  And this, dear brothers and sisters," he said, "is true for every Christian: Faith is above all a personal, intimate encounter with Jesus, and to experience his closeness, his friendship, his love; only in this way does one learn to know him ever more, and to love and follow him ever more. May this happen to each one of us."

Gaze At the Star! Aug 20 - Saint Bernard
O man, whoever you are, carried along by the tide of this world, tossed adrift among its storms and tempests,
never take your eyes from the light of this star.
When the winds of temptation are unleashed upon you, when you are washed up on the reefs of adversity,
fix your eyes on the star, and call to Mary!
If you are tossed on the waves of pride, ambition or jealousy, look at the star and cry out for Mary!
If anger or greed or the beguiling charms of the flesh rock the vessel of your soul, gaze at Mary.
When, racked by the enormity of your sins, ashamed that your conscience is sullied or in terror of the threat of judgment, you are swallowed up by the abyss of sorrow or plunged into the depths of despair, think of Mary.
When you are in danger, distress or desperate situations, call for Mary, cry out to Mary!
Oh, that her name may never leave your lips, may never leave your heart; never cease to imitate her life so that you may obtain the favor of her prayers. (...)
And your own experience will show you the rightness of calling out that word: the name of the virgin was Mary!
St Bernard of Clairvaux (d. 1153) Excerpt from his second homily "Super Missus"

August 20: OUR LADY OF BERNARD'S « AVE » (12th Century)
Why Would Human Weakness be Afraid to Draw Near Mary?
Why would human weakness be afraid to draw near Mary? There is nothing austere or terrible in her,
she is all sweetness and has only milk and wool to offer us.
Read attentively the whole Gospel story and if you find in Mary a single word of reproof, a single harsh word, the smallest mark of indignation, I will allow you to suspect her for the rest, and to be afraid to go near her. But on the contrary, if you find her instead, on every occasion, as you will indeed, full of grace and kindness,
full of mercy and sweetness, give thanks to Him who, in his infinitely sweet mercy,
gave you a mediatrix such that you will never have anything to fear from her.
After all, she made herself completely available to all, and through her immense charity, obliging fools as well as wise.
Saint Bernard of Clairvaux (+1152) Doctor of the Church
Sermon for the Sunday in the Octave of the Assumption of Mary

1146 B. C. Samuel, dedicated to service of the Lord before birth, prophet; the 15th and last of the Judges of Israel
During Papacy of St. Theophilus. [COPTIC] Commemoration of the Great Sign, the Lord had Manifested
  75 St. Amadour witness martyrdom of Sts. Peter Paul  miracles at the site
           
Marytrs of Thrace; a group of 37 martyrs who suffered in Thrace, in modem northern Greece.
300 Romæ beáti Porphyrii, qui fuit homo Dei, et sanctum Mártyrem Agapítum (Aug 19) erudívit in fide et doctrína Christi.
310 St. Lucius martyr Martyrs with companions in Cyrene, Ptolemais, Africa; converted the governor Dignian
362 St. Heliodorus Persian martyr King Shapur II deported 9,000 Christians but kept 300 for torture and death.
406 In Judæa sancti Samuélis Prophétæ, cujus sacra ossa (ut beátus Hierónymus scribit) Arcádius Augústus Constantinópolim tránstulit, et prope Séptimum collocávit.
 470 St. Maximus Abbot Founder a disciple of St. Martin of Tours
 
651 St  Oswin, Martyr;  a monastery at Gilling; incursion prayers over the body of St Oswin, whose shrine was made illustrious by miracles, was translated to Tynemouth
 662 St. Haduin founded Norte Dame d'Evron
 685 St Philibert, Abbot; founder; miracles
 852 St. Leovigild and Christopher Martyrs of Cordoba, Spain
 960 St. Edbert King of Northumbria became a Benedictine monk
1148 WILLIAM OF ST. THIERRY: CANTOR OF LOVE
1153 St. Bernard of Clairvaux Abbot and Doctor of the Church eminently endowed with the gift of miracles see Also John of Salisbury introduced Bernard JOHN OF SALISBURY: NATURAL LAW MUST INSPIRE POSITIVE LAW
1155 St. Bernard of Valdeiglesias Patron saint of Candelada, Spain; a monk at Valdeiglesias, possibly a Cistercian.
1158 St. Ronald martyr warrior chieftain fulfilling the pledge by erecting the cathedral of St. Magnus at Kirkwall.
1180 St. Herbert Hoscam Archbishop Patron saint of Conze, Italy; English by birth served as prelate of Basilicata area.
1240 St. Manetto On Mount Senario in Tuscany, the birthday of, confessor, one of the seven founders of the Order of the Servites of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who died as he was repeating a hymn to her.  His feast, with that of his companions, is kept on 12 February.
1866 Bd Mary De Mattias, Virgin, Foundress of The Sisters Adorers of The Precious Blood
1912 1890 Wilhelm und Katharina Booth Anglikanische Kirche: 20. August


1146 B. C. Samuel, dedicated to service of the Lord before birth, prophet; the 15th and last of the Judges of Israel
In Judæa sancti Samuélis Prophétæ, cujus sacra ossa (ut beátus Hierónymus scribit) Arcádius Augústus Constantinópolim tránstulit, et prope Séptimum collocávit.
    In Judea, the holy prophet Samuel, whose holy relics (as is related by St. Jerome) were taken to Constantinople by Emperor Arcadius, and deposited near Septimum.

Samuel, who was dedicated to the service of the Lord before his birth, became a prophet. He anointed the first two kings of Israel, Saul and David. During his lifetime, the hand of the Lord was against the Philistines. Every year, Samuel used to go on a circuit judging for Israel between Ramah, Bethel, Gilgal and Mizpeh. He lead Israel against the Philistines in Mizpeh.

In the Old Testament, the Lord was instructing the children of Israel in dreams and visions to His prophets and priests. There were several periods during which the children of Israel did evil in the eyes of the Lord by worshipping idols. During those periods the word of the Lord became rare and there were not many visions. The Lord also delivered them to the hands of their enemies until they repented and returned to Him. He then gave them prophets and judges to lead them to His way and to rescue them from their oppressors.

 The Prophet Samuel was the fifteenth and last of the Judges of Israel, living more than 1146 years before the Birth of Christ. He was descended from the Tribe of Levi, and was the son of Elkanah from Ramathaim-Zophim of Mount Ephraim. He was born, having been besought from the Lord through the prayers of his mother Hannah (therefore he received the name Samuel, which means "besought from God"). Even before birth, he was dedicated to God. Her song, "My heart exults in the Lord," is the Third Ode of the Old Testament (1 Sam/1 Kings 2:1-10).

When the boy reached the age of three, his mother went with him to Shiloh and in accord with her vow dedicated him to the worship of God. She gave him into the care of the High Priest Eli, who at this time was a judge over Israel. The prophet grew in the fear of God, and at twelve years of age he had a revelation that God would punish the house of the High Priest Eli, because he did not restrain the impiety of his sons. Eli's whole family was wiped out in a single day.

The prophecy was fulfilled when the Philistines, having slain in battle 30,000 Israelites (among them were also the sons of the High Priest, Hophni and Phinees), gaining victory and capturing the Ark of the Covenant. Hearing this, the High Priest Eli fell backwards from his seat at the gate, and breaking his back, he died. The wife of Phinees, upon hearing what had happened in this very hour, gave birth to a son (Ichabod) and died with the words: "The glory has departed from Israel, for the Ark of God is taken away" (1 Sam/1 Kgs 4: 22).

Upon the death of Eli, Samuel became the judge of the nation of Israel. The Ark of God was returned by the Philistines on their own initiative. After returning to God, the Israelites returned to all the cities that the Philistines had taken. In his old age, the Prophet Samuel made his sons Joel and Abiah judges over Israel, but they did not follow the integrity and righteous judgment of their father, since they were motivated by greed.

Then the elders of Israel, wanting the nation of God to be "like other nations" (1 Sam/1 Kgs 8: 20), demanded of the Prophet Samuel that they have a king. The Prophet Samuel anointed Saul as king, but saw in this a downfall of the people, whom God Himself had governed until this time, announcing His will through His chosen saints. Resigning the position of judge, the Prophet Samuel asked the people if they consented to his continued governance, but no one stepped forward for him.

After denouncing the first king, Saul, for his disobedience to God, the Prophet Samuel anointed David as king. He had offered David asylum, saving him from the pursuit of King Saul. The Prophet Samuel died in extreme old age. His life is recorded in the Bible (1 Sam/1 Kgs; Sirach 46:13-20).
In the year 406 A.D. the relics of the Prophet Samuel were transferred from Judea to Constantinople.
During Papacy of St. Theophilus. [COPTIC] Commemoration of the Great Sign, the Lord had Manifested

On this day, the church celebrates the commemoration of the great miracle which God performed during the papacy of St. Theophilus, the twenty-third pope of Alexandria. There was in the city of Alexandria, a Jewish man whose name was Philexinos. He was very rich, feared God and practiced the Law of Moses. There was also in the city two poor Christian men, one of them blasphemed saying, "Why do we worship Christ and remain poor, while this Jewish man Philexinos is very rich?" The other man answered him saying, "The possessions of this world are nothing before God, for if it was, He would not give it to the worshippers of idols, adulterers, thieves, and murderers. The prophets were poor and persecuted, as also the apostles were, and the Lord said, 'the least of these my brethren'" (Matthew 25:40). Satan, the enemy of good, would not permit that man to accept any of the words of his friend. The rebellious friend went to Philexinos the Jew and asked him to accept him as his servant. Philexinos replied, "It is not lawful for me to employ anyone unless he believes in my faith, but if you want alms, I can give some to you." This miserable man replied, "Take me to your house, and I will adopt your faith and I will do whatsoever you command me."

Philexinos took him to the synagogue and the chief of the Jews asked him before all the Jewish congregation saying, "Is it true that you have denied your Christ and become a Jew like us?" He replied, "Yes," and that debased man rejected Christ the Lord before the Jewish congregation. Thus to poverty in money he added poverty in Faith. Then the chief of the Jews commanded them to make for him a cross of wood. They gave him a reed, on the top of which was a sponge full of vinegar, and a spear. Then they said to him, "Spit upon this cross, offer to him this vinegar, and pierce the cross with this spear and say, 'I pierce you O Christ.'" That debased man did everything as they commanded him. When he pierced the honorable cross with his sinful hand, blood and water flowed forth, and ran down on the ground. Then this apostate dropped dead instantly, and dried up like a rock.

Great fear fell upon all those who were present, many of them believed and cried, saying, "One is the Lord God of the Christians, and we believe in Him." Then they took the blood, and anointed their faces and eyes with it. Philexinos took also some of the blood and sprinkled it on his daughter who was born blind, and she saw straightway. He believed as well as his household, and many others of the Jews. Afterwards, they informed Pope Theophilus about this incident. He took Abba Kyrellos (Pope Kyrellos I), many of the priests and people, and went to the synagogue of the Jews, where he saw the cross, the blood and water. The Pope took the blood and water, blessed himself and also blessed the people. He wiped the blood from the floor, and laid it in a vessel for blessing. He ordered the wooden cross carried to the church. Afterwards those present confessed their faith before the Pope who baptized them in the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and blessed them. Then they went to their homes giving thanks to the Lord Christ and glorifying his Holy Name.
Glory be to our God forever. Amen
75 St. Amadour witness martyrdom of Sts. Peter Paul miracles happening at the site
ST AMADOUR  is honoured in Quercy and the Limousin as founder of the shrine of our Lady now known as Rocamadour, and as the first hermit of Gaul. There is in fact nothing whatever known about him, neither of the events ol his life nor the age in which he lived, nor even that he ever existed. His legend was first written some time after the discovery at Rocamadour in 1166 of an incorrupt body.  The hypothesis that St Amadour was an early solitary in the valley of Alzou and gave his name to the spot is not supported by a shadow of evidence.
  According to the fiction, Amadour was a servant of the Holy Family: afterwards married St Veronica. Driven from Palestine by persecution, they landed in Gaul and, under the direction of St Martial (who lived not in the first but in the third century), evangelized the neighbourhood of Bordeaux and Cahors.  Amadour was sent to Rome to report Martial's progress to St Peter, where he was present at the martyrdom of the Apostles; on his return he continued his preaching, founded monasteries, and, after the death of Veronica, retired to his lonely cell in Quercy where he built the chapel of our Lady which became the great sanctuary. 
In the fifteenth century a fresh turn was given to this legend when St Amadour was gratuitously identified with the Zaccheus of St Luke xix. The finding of the incorrupt body of  St Amadour" is remembered in the popular saying, "With skin and bones like Amadour."

The curious and manifestly incredible legend of St Amadour, owing to popularity of the shrine and pilgrimage of Rocamadour, has attracted much attention in France. The subject has been critically and soberly dealt with by E. Rupin, first in his monograph Roe-Amadour; étude historique et archéologique (1904); and then in his Légende de Saint Amadour (1909).  In this last he replied convincingly to the booklet Notre-Dante de Roc-Amadour (1908) written by an uncritical assailant, J. T. Layral.  Cf. also the article of E. Albe, "La vie et les miracles de S. Amator" in the Analecta Bollandiana, vol. xxviii (1909), pp. 57-90.  In this the fictitious character of the whole tradition is made apparent by another line of argument.

  Hermit of legend, also called Amator. Tradition records that he was a servant in the house of the Holy Family. He is supposed to have married St. Veronica, going with her to Gaul (modern France) where they spread the Christian faith around Bordeaux. Amadour is also recorded as having gone to Rome to witness the martyrdom of Sts. Peter and Paul. He returned to Gaul and after the death of St. Veronica he became a hermit at Quircy, France, where he built a shrine to the Blessed Virgin Mary. A shrine called Rocamadour did exist and was a great pilgrimage site at one time. 

Communal chief town of the canton of Gramat, district of Gourdon, Department of Lot, in the Diocese of Cahors and the ancient province of Quercy. This village by the wonderful beauty of its situation merits the attention of artists and excites the curiosity of archæologists; but its reputation is due especially to its celebrated sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin which for centuries has attracted pilgrims from every country, among them kings, bishops, and nobles.

 A curious legend purported to explain the origin of this pilgrimage has given rise to controversies between critical and traditional schools, especially in recent times. According to the latter, Rocamadour is indebted for its name to the founder of the ancient sanctuary, St. Amadour, who was none other than Zacheus of the Gospel, husband of St. Veronica, who wiped the Saviour's face on the way to Calvary. Driven forth from Palestine by persecution, Amadour and Veronica embarked in a frail skiff and, guided by an angel, landed on the coast of Aquitaine, where thy met Bishop St. Martial, another disciple of Christ who was preaching the Gospel in the south-west of Gaul. After journeying to Rome, where he witnessed the martydoms of Sts. Peter and Paul, Amadour, having returned to France, on the death of his spouse, withdrew to a wild spot in Quercy where he built a chapel in honour of the Blessed Virgin, near which he died a little later. This marvellous account, like most other similar legends, unfortunately does not make its first appearance till long after the age in which the chief actors are deemed to have lived. The name of Amadour occurs in no document previous to the compilation of his Acts, which on careful examination and on an application of the rules of the cursus to the text cannot be judged older than the twelfth century. It is now well established that St. martial, Amadour's contemporary in the legend, lived in the third not the first century, and Rome has never included him among the members of the Apostolic College. The mention, therefore, of St. martial in the Acts of St. Amadour would alone suffice, even if other proof were wanting, to prove them a forgery. The untrustworthiness of the legend has led some recent authors to suggest that Amadour was an unknown hermit or possible St. Amator, Bishop of Auxerre, but this is mere hypothesis, without any historical basis. Although the origin of the sanctuary of Rocamadour, lost in antiquity, is thus first set down along with fabulous traditions which cannot bear the light of sound criticism, yet it is undoubted that this spot, hallowed by the prayers of innumerable multitudes of pilgrims, is worthy of our veneration. After the religious manifestations of the Middle Ages, Rocamadour, as a result of war and revolution, had become almost deserted. Recently, owing to the zeal and activity of the bishops of Cahors, it seems to have revived and pilgrims are beginning to crown there again

The Black Madonna of Rocamadour
Rocamadour owes its origin to St Amadour, who, according to tradition, chose the place as a hermitage for his devotions to the Virgin Mary. This famous place of pilgrimage, is most strikingly situated. Its buildings rise in stages up the side of a cliff on the right bank of the Alzou (Dordogne - France), which here runs between rocky walls 400 ft. in height. Flights of steps ascend from the lower town to the churchesa group of massive buildings half-way up the cliff. The chief of them is the church of NotreDame (1479), containing the wooden figure of the Madonna reputed to have been carved by St Amadour.

Rocamadour (250 km east from Bordeaux) became as important pilgrimage place in the Christian West as Santiago de Compostella, thanks to the progress of the Marian cult and thanks to the discovery, in 1166, of the body of St. Amadour. Tradition records that he was a servant in the house of the Holy Family. St. Amadour, who was none other than Zacheus of the Gospel, husband of St. Veronica, who wiped the Saviour's face on the way to Calvary. Driven forth from Palestine by persecution, Amadour and Veronica embarked in a frail skiff and, guided by an angel, landed on the coast of Aquitaine, where thy met Bishop St. Martial, another disciple of Christ who was preaching the Gospel in the south-west of Gaul. After journeying to Rome, where he witnessed the martydoms of Sts. Peter and Paul, Amadour, having returned to France, on the death of his spouse, withdrew to a wild spot in Quercy where he built a chapel in honour of the Blessed Virgin, near which he died a little later. The shrine, called Rocamadour, sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin, has attracted pilgrims for centuries from every country, among them kings, bishops, and nobles.

Reports of miracles happening at the site spread rapidly. King Henry Plantagenet was one of the first pilgrims to come to Rocamadour to find a miraculous cure. St. Louis IX of France followed in the next century, and Rocamadour became as important as Mont St. Michel as a pilgrimage destination. Few people know that Rocamadour has thus become the second most visited site in France – after Mont St. Michel’s 12th century monastery.

Today’s visitors is advised to avoid the traditional activity of climbing up the 216 stone steps on one’s knees, but instead to sign up for a guided walking tour on one’s feet. This fascinating tour will take you to four of the seven medieval chapels built into the rock, one of which contains the mysterious Black Madonna, venerated for over a thousand years. You’ll hear wonderful legends of how the body of St. Amadour was miraculously preserved for 1100 years; how the ancient bell rings itself when a miracle occurs at sea; how the sword in the rock you see in front of you is really the famous sword of Roland...Near the tomb of St. Amadour is the Church of the Black Madonna and the Mircaulous Bell.
Saint Philip was Bishop of Heraclea, and suffered martyrdom with Sts Severus, Memnon, and thirty-seven others in Thrace during the third century.  He was thrown into a fiery oven after his hands and feet were amputated.

Marytrs of Thrace; a group of 37 martyrs who suffered in Thrace, in modem northern Greece.
In Thrácia sanctórum trigínta septem Mártyrum, qui, sub Præside Apelliáno, pro Christi fide, mánibus pedibúsque præcísis, in camínum ardéntem injécti sunt.
    In Thrace, in the time of the governor Apellian, thirty-seven holy martyrs, who had their hands and feet cut off for the faith of Christ, and were cast into a burning furnace.
Ibídem sanctórum Mártyrum Sevéri, et Memnónis Centuriónis; qui, eódem mortis génere consummáti, victóres abiérunt in cælum.
   Also, holy martyrs Severus, centurion Memnon, who, suffering the same kind of death, went victoriously to heaven.
Their names are Orion, Antilinus, Molias, Eudemon, Silvanus, Sabinus, Eustathius, Straton, Bosua of Byzantium, Timothy, Palmatus, Mestus, Nikon, Difilus, Dometian, Maximus, Neophytus, Victor, Rinus, Satorninus, Epaphroditus, Cercanus, Gaius, Zoticus, Cronion, Anthony, Horus, Zoilus, Tyrannus, Agathon, Panstenus [Parthenias], Achilles, Panthyrias, Chrysanthus, Athenodorus, Pantoleon, Theosebius, Genephlius of Philippopolis.  
Their feet and hands were sliced off and then they were cast into a furnace.
300 Romæ beáti Porphyrii, qui fuit homo Dei, et sanctum Mártyrem Agapítum erudívit in fide et doctrína Christi.
    At Rome, blessed Porphyry, a man of God, who instructed the holy martyr Agapitus in the faith and doctrine of Christ.

310 St. Lucius martyr Martyrs with companions in Cyrene, Ptolemais, Africa.
In Cypro sancti Lúcii Senatóris, qui, perspécta constántia Theodóri, Cyrenénsis Epíscopi, in martyrio pósiti, ad Christi fidem est convérsus, et ad eam étiam Digniánum Præsidem pertráxit; cum eóque Cyprum proféctus, ibi, cum álios Christiános pro confessióne Dómini coronári vidéret, ultro se ipsum óbtulit, et cápitis obtruncatióne eándem martyrii corónam proméruit.
    In Cyprus, St. Lucius, senator, who was converted to the faith on seeing the constancy of Theodore, bishop of Cyrene, during his martyrdom.  He also converted the governor Dignian, with whom he set out for Cyprus, where, seeing other Christians crowned for the confession of the Lord, he offered himself voluntarily, and merited the same crown of martyrdom by beheading.
Martyr Lucius, a senator, was beheaded by the sword on the island of Crete in the year 310 for confessing his faith in Christ.
362 St. Heliodorus Persian martyr King Shapur II deported 9,000 Christians but kept 300 for torture and death.
With Abdiso, Dausa, and Mariahle, martyrs of Persia.
The Martyrs Heliodorus and Dosa suffered for Christ in Persia under the emperor Sapor II, in the year 380.
406 In Judæa sancti Samuélis Prophétæ, cujus sacra ossa (ut beátus Hierónymus scribit) Arcádius Augústus Constantinópolim tránstulit, et prope Séptimum collocávit.
    In Judea, the holy prophet Samuel, whose holy relics (as is related by St. Jerome) were taken to Constantinople by Emperor Arcadius, and deposited near Septimum.
470 St. Maximus Abbot Founder a disciple of St. Martin of Tours.
In castro Cainóne, in Gállia, sancti Máximi Confessóris, qui éxstitit discípulus beáti Mártini Epíscopi.
    At Chinon, St. Maximus, confessor, disciple of the blessed bishop Martin.
called Mesme. Maximus founded Chinon Abbey in Tours.

651 St  Oswin, Martyr;  a monastery at Gilling; incursion prayers over the body of St Oswin, whose shrine was made illustrious by miracles, was translated to Tynemouth
When his father Osric, King of Deira, was killed by the British Cadwallon in 633, the young Oswin was taken into Wessex for safety, where he was baptized and educated; but after the death of the great prince St Oswald in 642 he returned to the north and took possession of his kingdom. He governed it with virtue, prudence and prosperity.
  The Venerable Bede relates how, having rebuked St Aidan for giving away to a beggar a horse the king had given him, Oswin accepted Aidan's correction and apologized. Whereupon Aidan said to his attendants in the Irish language, which the king and his courtiers did not understand, that he was assured so humble and so good a king would not live long, because the nation was not worthy of such a ruler. His prediction was soon verified.
 Oswin incurred the jealousy of his cousin Oswy, King of Bernicia, the two felt out, and Oswy declared a state of open warfare. Oswin, seeing his own weakness and being desirous to spare human blood (or, as St Bede says, from simple prudence, but doubtless for both considerations), dismissed his forces at a place called Wilfaresdon, near Catterick.  Attended with one faithful he retired to Gilling, near Richmond in Yorkshire, which estate he had lately bestowed on one Hunwald.
  Oswy ordered his reeve, Ethelwin, to find Oswin and kill him. Hunwald treacherously betrayed his guest; Oswin and his thegn were slain together, and buried at Gilling.
  Queen Eanfleda, daughter to St Edwin and wife of Oswy, founded a monastery at Gilling, in which prayers might be ever offered up for both kings.  It was afterwards destroyed by the Danes, before whose incursions the body of St Oswin, whose shrine was made illustrious by miracles, was translated to Tynemouth.  Here it was lost sight of during the Danish troubles, but in 1065 a monk of Tynemouth discovered it in consequence of a vision, and it was accordingly enshrined again in the year 1100.
We know little of St Oswin beyond what is told us in Bede's Ecclesiastical History, bk iii, ch 14. There is, however, a twelfth-century life with two homilies and some liturgical matter. This has been used by Plummer in his notes to Bede. See also Stanton's Menology, pp. 401-403 .
685 St Philibert, Abbot; founder; miracles
In Hério ínsula sancti Philibérti Abbátis.    In the island of Hermoutier, St. Philibert, abbot.
He was born about 608 in Gascony.  His father, Philibaud, having received holy orders, was made bishop of Aire, and the young Philibert was educated under the eyes of his father, who sent him to the court of Dagobert I.  Here the example and instructions of the chancellor, St Ouen, made so deep an impression on him that at the age of twenty years he took the habit in the abbey of Rebais, founded by Ouen.  He was appointed successor to St Aile in the government of this house, but left it on finding some of the monks refractory, and his own inability through inexperience to deal with them.
  After having visited many monasteries to study various observances, he retired into Neustria, where Clovis II gave him ground in the forest of Jumièges.  Here he founded a monastery in 654, and the community of Jumièges increased in a short time to a large number of monks.  He also built a monastery for women, at Pavilly. St Philibert, having some business at the court, boldly reproached Ebroin, mayor of the palace, for his many acts of injustice. This brought on him the vengeance of that minister, who slandered him to St Ouen; in consequence Philibert was imprisoned for a time at Rouen and obliged to quit Jumiêges.
 The saint then retired to Poitiers, and afterward to the little island of Herio, on the coast of Poitou, where he founded a monastery later called Noirmoutier.  He likewise founded the priory of Quincay, near Poitiers, the government of which he gave to St Achard, whom he afterwards made abbot of JumiIges.  These he peopled with monks from his first foundation.  He had a further responsibility put upon him when Ansoald, Bishop of Poitiers, founded a monastery at Luçon, which he put under the supervision of St Philibert, who was remembered for his concern for the spiritual and temporal welfare of the lay neighbours of his various houses.
There is an early life of St Philibert which has been printed both by Mabillon and in the Acta Sanctorum, August, vol. iv.  But the best text and the most valuable contribution to the subject is that of R. Poupardin, Monuments de l'histoire des abbayes de Saint-Philibert (1905), which contains a discussion of the authorship and recensions of the life, as well as the record of the miracles of St Philibert, and much supplementary matter .
852 St. Leovigild and Christopher Martyrs of Cordoba, Spain
Córdubæ, in Hispánia, sanctórum Mártyrum Leovigíldi et Christóphori Monachórum, qui, in Arabum persecutióne, pro Christiánæ fídei defensióne in cárcerem conjécti, ac mox, cervícibus abscíssis, igni tráditi, martyrii palmam adépti sunt.
    At Cordova, during the persecution of the Arabs, the holy martyrs Leovigild and Christopher, monks, who were thrust into prison for the defence of the Christian faith, and soon after, being beheaded and cast into the fire, thus obtained the palm of martyrdom.
Put to death under the ruler of Cordoba, Abd al-Rahman II. Leovigild a priest and Christopher a monk.
Martyrs of Córdoba From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The hagiography of the forty-eight Martyrs of Córdoba was developed in Christian Spain, describing in detail their executions for capital violations of Muslim law in al-Andalus. They were the most important new saints in Iberia in the 9th century. The martyrdoms instanced by Eulogius took place between 851 and 859; with few exceptions, the Christians invited execution by committing public offenses: some martyrs appeared before the Muslim authorities to denounce Mohammed; others, Christian children of Islamic-Christian marriages, publicly proclaimed their Christianity (Coope 1995). The lack of an interested chronicler after Eulogius' own martyrdom has given a misimpression that there were fewer episodes later in the 9th century.

Historical background
In 711 CE, a Muslim army from North Africa had invaded Visigoth Christian Spain. Under their leader Tariq ibn-Ziyad, they landed at Gibraltar and brought most of the Iberian Peninsula under Islamic rule in an eight-year campaign. The Iberian Peninsula was called al-Andalus by its Muslim rulers. When the Umayyad Caliphs were deposed in Damascus in 750, the dynasty relocated to Córdoba, ruling an emirate there; consequently the city gained in luxury and importance, as a center of Iberian Muslim culture.

Once the Muslims conquered Spain, they governed it in accordance with Islamic shariah law. Christians and Jews were treated as dhimmis, or protected persons subject to a poll tax. Under many traditional interpretations of shariah, including those then current in al-Andalus, blasphemy against Islam, whether by Muslims or dhimmis, and apostasy from Islam were all grounds for the death penalty.

Though four Christian basilicas and numerous Christian monasteries mentioned in Eulogius' martyrology remained open, the Christian population was gradually becoming assimilated. Notably Reccafred, Bishop of Cordoba, taught the virtues of toleration and compromise with the Muslim authorities. To the scandal of Eulogius, whose texts are the only source for these martyrdoms, and who was venerated as a saint from the 9th century, the bishop sided with Muslim authorities against the martyrs, whom he regarded as fanatics. The closures of monasteries begins to be recorded towards the middle of the 9th century. The monk Eulogius encouraged the martyrs as a way to reinforce the faith of the Christian community. He composed tractates and a martyrology to justify the self-immolation of the martyrs, of which a single manuscript, containing his Documentum martyriale, the three books of his Memoriale sanctorum and his Liber apologeticus martyrum, was preserved in Oviedo, in the Christian kingdom of Asturias in the far northwestern coast of Hispania.
There the relics of Saint Eulogius were translated in 884 .
960 Saint Edbert King of Northumbria became a Benedictine monk
successor of St. Ceolwulph He reigned for two decades and then became a Benedictine monk at York.

St Edbert Of Lindisfarne
Bishop who always gave ten per cent of what he had to the poor. When the body of St CUTHBERT was found in an amazing state of preservation Saint Edbert Saint had it displayed on high in a church to invoke veneration
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1148 WILLIAM OF ST. THIERRY: CANTOR OF LOVE
Theologian and mystic, and so called from the monastery of which he was abbot, b. at Liège about 1085; d. at Signy about 1148. William came of a noble family, and made his studies at the Benedictine Monastery of Saint Nicaise at Reims, together with his brother Simon. Here both embraced the religious life, and were raised to the abbatial dignity, Simon of St. Nicolas-aux-Bois, Diocese of Laon, and William at St-Thierry near Reims in 1119. Prior to this William had known St. Bernard, and had formed with him a close intimacy, which lasted for life. His greatest desire was to live with the saint at Clairvaux, but the latter disapproved of the plan and imposed on him the duty of remaining in charge of the souls which Providence had confided to him. However after having assisted (1140) at St-Médard near Soissons at the first general chapter of the Benedictines, where he suggested wise regulations, William, on the pleas of long infirmities and more and more attracted to a life of retirement, resigned his dignity as abbot (1135), and withdrew to the Cistercian abbey at Signy (diocese of Reims); he did not venture to retire to Clairvaux lest his friend Bernard would refuse to accept his abdication. Here, amid almost constant suffering, he divided his free time between prayer and study. According to a contemporary annalist his death occurred about the time of the council held at Reims under Pope Eugenius; this council took place in 1148, and his death should be placed in this year or the preceding. The necrology of his abbey dates it 8 September., in any case it was prior to that of St. Bernard (20 August, 1153).

Besides his letters to St. Bernard, William wrote several works which he himself enumerates, somewhat incorrectly, in one of his letters. Among them are: "On the solitary life" (De vita solitaria); "On the contemplation of God" (De Deo contemplando), modelled on the "Confessions" and "soliloquies" ofSt. Augustine ; "The nature and dignity of Divine love" (De natura et dignitate amoris), the sequel to the preceding; "The Mirror of Faith" (Speculum fidei); "The Enigma of Faith" (Aenigma fidei); "On the Sacrament of the Altar" (De sacramento altaris liber), setting forth against the monk Rupert his views on the manner of the presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist; "Commentaries on the Canticle of Canticles" (complete), the first according to the conferences of St. Bernard, the second according to St. Ambrose, the third according to St. Gregory the Great; "Commentary on the Epistle of St. Paul to the Romans".

William was the first to deal with the errors of Abelard and to urge St. Bernard against him. He wrote "The Dispute against Abelard" (Disputatio adversus Petrum Abelardum), in which are arranged under twelve heads the errors which were condemned by the Council of Sens; the "Disputation of the Fathers against the dogma of Abelard" (Disputatio catholicorum Patrum adversus dogmata Petri Abelardi) was a reply to Abelard's apology; "On the errors of Guillaume de Conches" (De erroribus Guillelmi de Conchis) was a defence of the true idea of the Trinity. To these works should be added a life of St. Bernard, of which William wrote only the first chapters. His works were first printed by Tissier in "Bibliotheca Cisterciensis", IV (Bonofonte, 1669), and republished in P.L., CXXX (Paris, 1885).
 

VATICAN CITY, 2 DEC 2009 (VIS) - William of St. Thierry was the subject of the Holy Father's catechesis during his general audience, celebrated this morning in St. Peter's Square.

  William, a friend and admirer of Bernard of Clairvaux, was born in Liege between the years 1075 and 1080. A member of a noble family, he was educated in the most famous schools of the time and later entered the Benedictine monastery of Saint-Nicaise in Reims. He subsequently became abbot of the monastery of Saint-Thierry where, however, he was unable to reform the community as he wished and abandoned the Benedictines to enter the Cistercian abbey of Signy. There he wrote a number of important works of monastic theology. 

  "De natura et dignitate amoris" (The nature and the dignity of love) contains, the Pope explained, one of William's fundamental ideas, which also holds true for us today: "The principal force that moves the human soul is love. ... The truth is that only one task is entrusted to each human being: learning to love sincerely, authentically and freely. But only at the school of God can this task be achieved and can man attain the end for which he was created". 

  "Learning to love is a long and arduous path", said the Holy Father. "In this journey people must impose an effective asceticism upon themselves ... in order to eliminate any disordered affections ... and unify their lives with God - source, goal and power of love - until reaching the summit of spiritual life, which William defined as 'wisdom'. At the end of this ascetic itinerary, we experience great serenity and sweetness". 

  William likewise attributes considerable importance "to the emotional dimension" because "our heart is made of flesh and when we love God, Who is Love, how can we not express our human feelings in this relationship with the Lord? ... The Lord Himself, becoming man, chose to love us with a heart of flesh". 

  For this Cistercian monk, love "illuminates the mind and enables a better and more profound understanding of God and, in God, of people and events". Love "produces attraction and communion to the point of effecting a transformation, an assimilation, between the lover and the loved. ... And this holds true, above all, for knowledge of God and of His mysteries, which surpass our mind's capacity to understand. God is known if he is loved", Benedict XVI affirmed.
 
  He concluded by quoting from the "Epistola aurea" addressed to the Cistercians of Mont-Dieu, a summary of William of St. Thierry's ideas on the subject of love: "The image of God present in man impels him towards resemblance; that is, towards an ever fuller identification between his will and the divine will. This perfection, which William calls 'unity of spirit', cannot be achieved through individual effort, ... but by the action of the Holy Spirit which ... purifies and ... transforms into charity all the desire for love present in the human being. ...In this way ... man becomes by grace what God is by nature".
AG/WILLIAM OF ST. THIERRY/...VIS 091202 (520)
1153 St. Bernard of Clairvaux Abbot and Doctor of the Church eminently endowed with the gift of miracles
In território Lingoniénsi deposítio sancti Bernárdi, primi Clarævallénsis Abbátis, vita, doctrína et miráculis gloriósi, quem Pius Octávus, Póntifex Máximus, universális Ecclésiæ Doctórem declarávit et confirmávit.
    In the territory of Langres, the death of St. Bernard, first abbot of Clairvaux, illustrious for virtues, learning, and miracles.  He was declared and confirmed doctor of the Universal Church by the Sovereign Pontiff, Pius VIII.

August 20, 2009 St. Bernard of Clairvaux (1091-1153)  
Man of the century! Woman of the century! You see such terms applied to so many today—“golfer of the century,” “composer of the century,” “right tackle of the century”—that the line no longer has any punch. But the “man of the twelfth century,” without doubt or controversy, has to be Bernard of Clairvaux. Adviser of popes, preacher of the Second Crusade, defender of the faith, healer of a schism, reformer of a monastic Order, Scripture scholar, theologian and eloquent preacher: any one of these titles would distinguish an ordinary man. Yet Bernard was all of these—and he still retained a burning desire to return to the hidden monastic life of his younger days.


In the year 1111, at the age of 20, Bernard left his home to join the monastic community of Citeaux. His five brothers, two uncles and some 30 young friends followed him into the monastery. Within four years a dying community had recovered enough vitality to establish a new house in the nearby valley of Wormwoods, with Bernard as abbot. The zealous young man was quite demanding, though more on himself than others. A slight breakdown of health taught him to be more patient and understanding. The valley was soon renamed Clairvaux, the valley of light.

His ability as arbitrator and counselor became widely known. More and more he was lured away from the monastery to settle long-standing disputes. On several of these occasions he apparently stepped on some sensitive toes in Rome. Bernard was completely dedicated to the primacy of the Roman See. But to a letter of warning from Rome he replied that the good fathers in Rome had enough to do to keep the Church in one piece. If any matters arose that warranted their interest, he would be the first to let them know.

Shortly thereafter it was Bernard who intervened in a full-blown schism and settled it in favor of the Roman pontiff against the antipope.

The Holy See prevailed on Bernard to preach the Second Crusade throughout Europe. His eloquence was so overwhelming that a great army was assembled and the success of the crusade seemed assured. The ideals of the men and their leaders, however, were not those of Abbot Bernard, and the project ended as a complete military and moral disaster.

Bernard felt responsible in some way for the degenerative effects of the crusade. This heavy burden possibly hastened his death, which came August 20, 1153.

Comment: Bernard’s life in the Church was more active than we can imagine possible today. His efforts produced far-reaching results. But he knew that they would have availed little without the many hours of prayer and contemplation that brought him strength and heavenly direction. His life was characterized by a deep devotion to the Blessed Mother. His sermons and books about Mary are still the standard of Marian theology.
Quote: “In dangers, in doubts, in difficulties, think of Mary, call upon Mary. Let not her name depart from your lips, never suffer it to leave your heart. And that you may more surely obtain the assistance of her prayer, neglect not to walk in her footsteps. With her for guide, you shall never go astray; while invoking her, you shall never lose heart; so long as she is in your mind, you are safe from deception; while she holds your hand, you cannot fall; under her protection y ou have nothing to fear; if she walks before you, you shall not grow weary; if she shows you favor, you shall reach the goal” (St. Bernard).
   St Bernard third son of Tescelin Sorrel, a Burgundian noble, and Aleth, daughter of Bernard, lord of Montbard. He was born in 1090 at Fontaines, a castle near Dijon, a lordship belonging to his father.  His parents had seven children, namely, Bd Guy, Bd Gerard, St Bernard, Bd Humbeline, Andrew, Bartholomew and Bd Nivard.  They were all well educated, and learned Latin and verse-making before the sons were applied to military exercise and feats of arms.
  Bernard was sent to Châtillon on the Seine, to pursue a complete course of studies in a college of secular canons.  He even then loved to be alone, largely at first because of shyness; his progress in learning was far greater than could be expected from one of his age; and he was soon alert to listen to what God by His holy inspirations spoke to his heart.
  One Christmas-eve, while waiting with his mother to set out for Matins, he fell asleep and seemed to see the infant Jesus newly born in the stable at Bethlehem; from that day he had a most tender devotion towards that great mystery of love and mercy, the manhood of Christ.
   When he was seventeen his mother died.  Bernard was greatly attached to Aleth and her loss was a heavy blow; he was in danger of
becoming morbidly despondent, till he was rallied out of his brooding and inertia by his lively sister Humbeline.
  Bernard made his appearance in the world with all the advantages and talents which can make it attractive to a young man, or which could make him loved by it.  His personal attractiveness and wit, his affability and sweetness of temper, endeared him to everybody; in these very advantages lay his chief danger, and for a time there was serious risk of his becoming lukewarm and indifferent.  But he began to think of forsaking the world and the pursuit of letters, which greatly attracted him, and of going to Citeaux, where only a few years before SS. Robert, Alberic and Stephen Harding had established the first monastery of that strict interpretation of the Benedictine rule, called after it "Cistercian".
   He wavered for some time in his mind, and one day in great anxiety he went into a church by the road and prayed that God would direct him to discover and follow His will.  He arose steadily fixed in the resolution of following the severe Cistercian life.  His friends endeavoured to dissuade him from it; but he not only remained firm-he enlisted four of his brothers as well, and an uncle.
  Hugh of Macon (who afterward founded the monastery of Pontigny, and died bishop of Auxerre), an intimate friend, wept bitterly at the thought of separation, but by two interviews was induced to become his companion.  Nor were these the only ones who, with apparently no previous thought of the religious life, suddenly decided to leave the world for the austere life of Citeaux.  Bernard induced in all thirty-one men to follow him-he who himself had been uncertain of his call only a few weeks before.
It is a happening unparalleled in Christian history.
   Bernard's eloquent appeals were irresistible; mothers feared for their sons, wives for their husbands, lest they came under the sway of that compelling voice and look. They assembled at Châtillon, and on the day appointed for their meeting Bernard and his brothers went to Fontaines to take farewell of their father and beg his blessing.  They left Nivard, the youngest brother, to be a comfort to him in his old age.  Going out they saw him at play with other children, and Guy said to him, "Adieu, my little Nivard! You will have all the estates and lands to yourself."  The boy answered, "What! you then take Heaven, and leave me only the earth.  The division is too unequal."  They went away; but soon after Nivard followed them, so that of the whole family there only remained in the world the old father and his daughter, Humbeline.

  The company arrived at Citeaux about Easter in 1112 and the abbot, the English St Stephen, who had not had a novice for several years, received them with open arms. St Bernard was then twenty-two.  He entered this house with the desire to die to the remembrance of men, to live hidden and be forgotten, that he might be occupied only with God. After three years the abbot, seeing the great progress which Bernard had made and his extraordinary abilities, ordered him to go with twelve monks to found a new house in the diocese of Langres in Champagne. They walked in procession, singing psalms, with their new abbot at their head, and settled in a place called the Valley of Wormwood, surrounded by a forest.  These thirteen monks grubbed up a sufficient area and, with the assistance of the bishop and the people of the country, built themselves a house.
  This young colony lived through a period of extreme and grinding hardship.  The land was poor and their bread was of coarse barley; boiled beech leaves were sometimes served up instead of vegetables.  Bernard at first was so severe in his discipline, coming down upon the smallest distractions and least transgressions of his brethren, whether in confession or in chapter, that although his monks behaved with the utmost humility and obedience they began to be discouraged, which made the abbot sensible of his fault. He condemned himself for it to a long silence. At length he resumed his preaching, and provided that meals should be more regular, though the food was still of the coarsest.
  The reputation of the house and of the holiness of its abbot soon became so great that the number of monks had risen to a hundred and thirty and the name of the valley was changed to Clairvaux, because it was situated right in the eye of the sun. Bernard's aged father Tescelin and the young Nivard followed him in 1117, and received the habit at his hands.  The first four daughter-houses of Citeaux became each a mother-house to others, and Clairvaux had the most numerous offspring, including Rievaulx and, in a sense, Fountains in England.

  In 1121 Bernard wrought his first miracle, restoring, while he sang Mass, power of speech to a certain lord that he might confess his sins before he died, three days after, having made restitution for numerous acts of injustice. It is related that other sick persons were cured instantaneously by his making the sign of the cross upon them; and we are also told that the church of Foigny was infested with flies till, by Bernard saying he "excommunicated" them, they all died. The malediction of the flies of Foigny became a proverb in France.
 The contemporary William of Saint-Thierry gives a most unpleasant account of the weakness of Bernard's stomach (which was aggravated by insufficient and unsuitable food), and in consideration of his ill-health the general chapter dispensed him from work in the fields and ordered him to undertake extra preaching instead. This led to his writing a treatise on the Degrees of Humility and Pride, the first of his published works. It includes a study of character which, says the Abbé Vacandard, "the most expert psychologist would not disavow".

  Notwithstanding St Bernard's love of retirement, obedience and Church's needs frequently drew him from his cell.  Like several other great saints who had in a supreme degree the gift of contemplation and wished only to live alone with God in the retirement of a monastery, he had for years on end to be about his Father's business in active and public, even political, affairs.  In 1137 he wrote that his life was "over-run in all quarters with anxieties, suspicions, cares, and there is scarcely an hour that is left free from the crowd of discordant applicants, from the trouble and care of business.  I have no power to stop their coming and cannot refuse to see them, and they do not leave me even the time to pray."
  So great was the reputation of his character and powers that princes desired to
have their differences determined by him and bishops regarded him decisions with the greatest respect, referring to him important affairs of their churches. The popes looked upon his advice as the greatest support of the Holy See, and all people had a profound respect and veneration for his person and opinion.  It was said of him that he was "the oracle of Christendom".
   For Bernard was not only a great monastic founder, theologian and preacher, he was also a reformer and "crusader" he never refused what presented itself to him as a challenge, whether it came from the abbey of Cluny or from an antipope, from the philosopher Abelard or the call to the Second Crusade.

  And he was a hard hitter; to an ecclesiastic in Languedoc he wrote:
"You may imagine that what belongs to the Church belongs to you while you officiate there.  But you are mistaken: for though it be reasonable that one who serves the altar should live by the altar, yet it must not be to promote either his luxury or his pride.  Whatever goes beyond bare nourishment and simple plain clothing is sacrilege and theft."

  After the disputed papal election of 1130 the cause of Pope Innocent II took St Bernard up and down France, Germany and Italy.  On one of his returns to Clairvaux he took with him a new postulant, a canon of Pisa, Peter Bernard Paganelli, who was to become a beatified pope as Eugenius III; for the present he was put to stoke the fire in the monastery calefactory.  After the general acknowledgement of Innocent II Bernard was present at the tenth general council in Rome, the second of the Lateran, and it was at this period that he first met St Malachy of Armagh; the ensuing friendship between the two lasted until Malachy's death in Bemard's arms nine years later.  All this time Bernard had continued diligently to preach to his monks whenever he was able, notably those famous discourses on the Song of Songs.
  In 1140 he preached for the first time in a public pulpit, primarily to the students of Paris.  They are the two most powerful and trenchant of his discourses preserved to us, in which he says much of "things hellish and horrible"; they effected some good and a number of conversions among the students, who were at first superior to their fervent "evangelicalism".
<>But no sooner was the trouble of the papal schism over than he was involved in the controversy with Abelard. If St Bernard was the most eloquent and influential man of his age, the next was the brilliant and unhappy Peter Abelard, who was moreover, of far wider learning. The two were bound to come into collision, for they represented two currents of thought which, not necessarily opposed, were not yet properly fused: on the one hand, the weight of traditional authority and "faith not as an opinion but a certitude"; on the other, the new rationalism and exaltation of human reason. St Bernard himself has since been grievously criticized for his unrelenting pursuit of Abelard: but it seemed to him he had detected in Abelard vanity and arrogance masquerading as science, and rationalism masquerading as the use of reason, and his ability and learning made him the more dangerous.  St Bernard wrote to the pope:  "Peter Abelard is trying to make void the merit of Christian faith, when he deems himself able by human reason to comprehend God entirely- the man is great in his own eyes."
THEOLOGICAL DEBATE AND DEFENCE OF THE FAITH
VATICAN CITY, 4 NOV 2009 (VIS) - Benedict XVI dedicated his catechesis during this morning's general audience to the twelfth-century debate between St. Bernard of Clairvaux and Abelard, proponents, respectively, of the monastic and scholastic approaches to theology.
  The Pope began by recalling that theology "is the search for a rational understanding (in as much as that is possible) of the mysteries of Christian revelation, which are believed by faith, ... the faith that seeks intelligibility". Yet, "while St. Bernard ... places the emphasis on ... faith, Abelard ... insists ... on understanding by reason.
"For Bernard", the Holy Father added, "faith itself is endowed with an intimate certainty, founded on the testimony of Scripture and on the teaching of the Fathers of the Church. ... In cases of doubt or ambiguity, faith is protected and illuminated by the exercise of ecclesial Magisterium". Thus, for the abbot of Clairvaux, "theology has a single goal, that of promoting the living and intimate experience of God".
  "Abelard, who among other things introduced the term 'theology' as we understand it today, ... originally studied philosophy then applied the results achieved in this discipline to theology". He had a "religious spirit but a restless personality, and his life was rich in dramatic events: he challenged his teachers and had a child by a cultured and intelligent woman, Eloise. ... He also suffered ecclesiastical condemnations, although he died in full communion with the Church to whose authority he submitted with a spirit of faith".
  "An excessive use of philosophy rendered Abelard's Trinitarian doctrine dangerously fragile", said the Pope. "Likewise, in the field of morals his teaching was not without ambiguity as he insisted on considering the intention of the subject as the only source for describing the goodness or malice of moral acts, ignoring the objective moral significance and value of actions.
  "This aspect", Benedict XVI went on, "is highly relevant for our own age, in which culture often seems marked by a growing tendency to ethical relativism. Nonetheless, we must not forget the great merits of Abelard, ... who made a decisive contribution to the development of scholastic theology. ... Nor must we undervalue some of his insights such as, for example, his affirmation that non-Christian religious traditions already contain some form of preparation to welcome Christ, the Divine Word.
  "What can we learn from the confrontation ... between Bernard and Abelard and, more generally, between the monastic and scholastic approaches to theology?" the Holy Father asked. "Firstly", he went on, "I believe it shows the usefulness and need for healthy theological discussion within the Church, especially when the questions being debated have not been defined by the Magisterium, which, nonetheless, remains an ineluctable point of reference".
  "In the theological field there must be a balance between what we may call architectonic principles, which are given to us by the Revelation and which, hence, always maintain their priority and importance, and interpretative principles suggested by philosophy (that is, by reason), which have an important function, but only an instrumental one. When this balance fails, theological reflection risks becoming marred by error and it is then up to the Magisterium to exercise that necessary service to truth which is its task".
  "The theological dispute between Bernard and Abelard concluded with a full reconciliation. ... What prevailed in both men was that which we must have to heart whenever a theological controversy arises: that its, defending the faith of the Church and ensuring the triumph of truth in charity". AG/BERNARD ABELARD CONTROVERSY/...VIS 091104 (600)
    Probably about the beginning of the year 1142 the first Cistercian foundation was made in Ireland, from Clairvaux, where St Malachy had put some young Irishmen with St Bernard to be trained.  The abbey was called Mellifont, in county Louth, and within ten years of its foundation six daughter-houses had been planted out.
   At the same time Bernard was busied in the affair of the disputed succession to the see of York, set out in the account of St William of York (June 8), in the course of which Pope Innocent II died. His third successor, within eighteen months, was the Cistercian abbot of Tre Fontane, that Peter Bernard of Pisa to whom reference has been made, known to history as Bd Eugenius III.
  St Bernard wrote a charming letter of encouragement to his former subject, addressed:
"To his most dearly loved father and master, Eugenius, by the grace of God Sovereign Pontiff, Bernard, styled Abbot of Clairvaux, presents his humble service." But Bernard was also rather frightened, for Eugenius was shy, retiring, not accustomed to public life; and so he wrote also to the college of cardinals, a letter beginning: "May God forgive you what you have done.  You have put back among the living a man who was dead and buried.  You have again surrounded with cares and crowds one who had fled from cares and crowds.  You have made the last first, and behold! the last state of that man is more perilous than the first."
  Later he wrote for Pope Eugenius's guidance the longest and most important of his treatises, De consideratione, impressing upon him the various duties of his office, and strongly recommending him always to reserve time for self-examination and daily contemplation, applying himself to this still more than to business.  He proves to him that "consideration" serves to form and to employ in the heart all virtues. He reminds the pope that he is in danger of falling, by multiplicity of affairs, into a forgetfulness of God and hardness of heart:  the thought of which made the saint tremble for him, and tell him that his heart was already hardened and made insensible if he did not continually tremble for himself; for if the Pope falls, the whole Church of God is involved.
    In the meantime the Albigensian heresy and its social and moral implications had been making alarming progress in the south of France. St Bernard had already been called on to deal with a similar sect in Cologne, and in 1145 the papal legate, Cardinal Alberic, asked him to go to Languedoc.  Bernard was ill, weak and hardly able to make the journey, but he obeyed, preaching on the way.   Geoffrey, the saint's secretary, accompanied him, and relates many miracles to which he was an eye-witness.  He tells us that at Sarlat in Périgord, Bernard, blessing with the sign of the cross some loaves of bread which were brought, said,  By this shall you know the truth of our doctrine, and the falsehood of that which is taught by the heretics, if such as are sick among you recover their health by eating of these loaves".  The bishop of Chartres, who stood by, being fearful of the result, said, "That is, if they eat with a right faith, they shall be cured".  But the abbot replied, "I say not so; but assuredly they that taste shall be cured, that you may know by this that we are sent by authority derived from God, and preach His truth".  And a number of sick persons were cured by eating that bread.
  Bernard preached against the heresy throughout Languedoc; its supporters were stubborn and violent, especially at Toulouse and Albi, but in a very short time he had restored the country to orthodoxy and returned to Clairvaux. But he left too soon, the restoration was more apparent than real, and twenty-five years later Albigensianism had a stronger hold than ever.
Then came St Dominic.
On Christmas-day, 1144, the SeIjuk Turks had captured Edessa, centre of one of the four principalities of the Latin kingdom of Jerusalem, and appeals for help were at once sent to Europe, for the whole position was in danger. Pope Eugenius commissioned St Bernard to preach a crusade. He began at Vezelay Palm Sunday 1146, when Queen Eleanor and many nobles were the first to take the cross, and were followed by such large numbers of people, moved by the monk's burning words, that the supply of badges was exhausted and he had, to tear strips off his habit to make others. When he had roused France, he wrote letters to the rulers and peoples of western and central Europe, and then went in person into Germany. First he had to deal with a half-crazy monk, called Rudolf, who in his name was inciting the people to massacre Jews, and then made a triumphant journey through the Rhineland, confirming his appeals by an amazing succession of miracles, vouched for by his companions.
Emperor Conrad III took the cross from him, and set out with an army in the May of 1147, followed by Louis of France. This, the second, crusade was a miserable failure; Conrad's forces were cut to pieces in Asia Minor and Louis did not get beyond laying siege to Damascus.  Its ill success was in no small measure due to the crusaders themselves, of whom a great part were led by no other motive than the prospect of plunder, were lawless, and committed every kind of disorder in their march.  To those who were led by motives of sincere penance and religion, these afflictions were trials for the exercise of their virtue, but the ascetical exercise was dearly bought.  This unfortunate expedition raised a storm against St Bernard, because he had seemed to promise success.  His answer was that he confided in the divine mercy for a blessing on an enterprise undertaken for honour of the divine name, but that the sins of the army were the cause of its misfortunes further, who could judge extent of its success or failure, and
"how is it that the rashness of mortals dares reprove what they cannot understand".
Early in the year 1153 St Bernard entered on his last illness.  He had long dwelt in Heaven in desire, though this desire he by humility ascribed to weakness: "The saints ", said he, "were moved to pray for death out of a desire of seeing Christ; but I am forced hence by scandals and evil.  I confess myself overcome by the violence of the storm for want of courage." 
For a time he mended a little in the spring, and was called on for the last time to leave Clairvaux to succour his neighbour.  Inhabitants of Metz having been attacked by the duke of Lorraine, were vehemently bent on revenge.  To prevent shedding of more blood the archbishop of Trier went to Clairvaux, and implored Bernard to journey to Metz in order to reconcile the parties that were at variance.   At this call of charity he forgot his infirmity and made his way into Lorraine, where he prevailed on both sides to lay aside their arms and accept a treaty which he drew up.
  Back at Clairvaux, his illness returned with more grievous symptoms.  When he received the last sacraments and his spiritual children assembled about him in tears, he comforted and encouraged them, saying that the unprofitable servant ought not to occupy a place uselessly, that the barren tree ought to be rooted up.  His love for them inclined him to remain till they should be gathered with him to God; but his desire to enjoy Christ made him long for death. "I am straitened between two", he cried, "and what to choose I know not.  I leave it to the Lord; let Him decide."  And God took him to Himself, on August 20, 1533; he was sixty-three
years old, had been abbot for thirty-eight, and sixty-eight monasteries had been founded from Clairvaux-Bernard may indeed be counted among the founders of the Cistercian Order, who brought it out of obscurity into the centre of western Christendom.
  He was canonized in 1174; in 1830 formally declared a doctor of the Church:
 Doctor mellifluus, the Honey-sweet Doctor, as he is now universally called.
   St Bernard "carried the twelfth century on his shoulders, and he did not carry it without suffering"; he was during his life the oracle of the Church, the light of prelates, and the reformer of discipline; since his death he continues to comfort and instruct by his writings.
  The great French lay scholar of the seventeenth century, Henry Valois, did not hesitate to say
his writings are the most useful for piety among all the works of the fathers of the Church, though he is the youngest of them in time, and Sixtus of Siena, the convented Jew, said, "His discourse is everywhere sweet and ardent: it so delights and warms that from his tongue honey and milk seem to flow in his words, and a fire of burning love to glow from his breast ".
 To Erasmus he was "cheerful, pleasant, and vehement in moving the passions", and in another place "He is Christianly learned, holily eloquent, and devoutly cheerful and pleasing".
  From Pope Innocent II to Cardinal Manning, from Luther to Frederic Harrison, Catholics and Protestants of eminence have recognized the sanctity of St Bernard and greatness of his writings, in which he is equally gentle and vigorous; his charity appears in his reproaches, he reproves to correct, never to insult.
  He had so meditated on the Holy Scriptures that in almost every sentence he borrows something from their language, and diffuses the marrow of the sacred text with which his own heart was filled.  He was well read in the writings of the fathers of the Church, especially SS. Ambrose and Augustine, and often takes his thoughts from their writings and by a new turn makes them his own.
 Though he lived after St Anselm, the first of the scholastics, and though his contemporaries are ranked in that class, yet he treats theological subjects after the manner of the ancients. On this account, and for the great excellence of his writings, he is himself reckoned among the fathers.  Although he is the last among them in time, he is one of the greatest to those who desire to study and to improve their hearts in sincere religion.

Almost all the principal materials for the life of St Bernard have been printed in the Latin Patrology of Migne, vol. 185.  The most important source, known as the Vita prima -the best text is that of Waitz in MGH., Scriptores, vol. xxvi-is made up of five sections by different authors, his contemporaries, i.e. William of Saint-Thierry, Arnold of Bonneval and Geoffrey of Auxerre, supplemented by a collection of the miracles. There are other accounts of his life by Alan of Auxerre, John the Hermit, etc., and a good deal of more or less legendary matter in later compilations, notably the Exordium magnum of Conrad of Eberbach, and the Liber miraculorum of Herbert. All these sources as well as the saint's correspondence have been very carefully discussed by G. Buffer in his Vorstudien (1886) and in the first chapter of E. Vacandard's Vie de Saint Bernard (1910), which last book still remains the most authoritative biography.  More popular lives such as those by G. Goyau (1927), F. Hover (1927), and A. Luddy, Life and Teaching of St Bernard (1927), are numerous but the accuracy of the rather bulky work last named cannot always be relied upon. Many non-Catholic biographies or histories, notably those of J. Cotter Morison (1877), R. S. Storrs (1893), Watkin Williams (1935), and G. G. Coulton (Five Centuries of Religion, vol. i) aluo pay tribute to St Eernard'u greatnen. E. Gilson's Mystical Theology of St Bernard appeared in English in 1940. J. Leclercq's St Bernard mystique (1948) includes 200 pp. of passages from his writings. Dom Leclercq worked on a critical edition of the saint's works. See also the recueil of the Assoc. Bourguignonne des Societes Savantea, St Bernard et son temps (2 vols., 1928); and cf D. Knowles, The Monastic Order in England (1949). An English translation of the saint's letters by the Rev. B. Scott James, and a valuable volume of biographical material in French, Bernard de Clairvaux, ed. by Dom Jean Bouton, were published in 1953, among other relevant works.
St. Bernard,  St. Bernard was born of noble parentage in Burgundy, France, in the castle of Fontaines near Dijon. Under the care of his pious parents he was sent at an early age to a college at Chatillon, where he was conspicuous for his remarkable piety and spirit of recollection. At the same place he entered upon the studies of theology and Holy Scripture.

After the death of his mother, fearing the snares and temptations of the world, he resolved to embrace the newly established and very austere institute of the Cistercian Order, of which he was destined to become the greatest ornament. He also persuaded his brothers and several of his friends to follow his example. In 1113, St. Bernard, with thirty young noblemen, presented himself to the holy Abbot, St. Stephen, at Citeaux.
After a novitiate spent in great fervor, he made his profession in the following year. His superior soon after, seeing the great progress he had made in the spiritual life, sent him with twelve monks to found a new monastery, which afterward became known as the celebrated Abbey of Clairvaux. St. Bernard was at once appointed Abbot and began that active life which has rendered him the most conspicuous figure in the history of the 12th century. He founded numerous other monasteries, composed a number of works and undertook many journeys for the honor of God. Several Bishoprics were offered him, but he refused them all. The reputation of St. Bernard spread far and wide; even the Popes were governed by his advice. He was commissioned by Pope Eugene III to preach the second Crusade. In obedience to the Sovereign Pontiff he traveled through France and Germany, and aroused the greatest enthusiasm for the holy war among the masses of the population. The failure of the expedition raised a great storm against the saint, but he attributed it to the sins of the Crusaders. St. Bernard was eminently endowed with the gift of miracles. He died on August 20, 1153.
Pope Encourages Personal Relationship With Christ Points to Example of St. Bernard of Clairvaux
VATICAN CITY, OCT. 21, 2009 (Zenit.org).
Only Jesus is "joy to the heart," says Benedict XVI, citing words from St. Bernard of Clairvaux. The Pope reflected today during the general audience on this 12th century saint, highlighting his personal relationship with Christ.
According to the Holy Father, "in a more than decisive way, the abbot of Clairvaux configures the theologian to the contemplative and the mystic. Only Jesus -- insists Bernard in face of the complex dialectical reasoning of his time -- only Jesus is 'honey to the mouth, song to the ear, joy to the heart.'" Ideas like this one, noted the Pontiff, won the saint his traditional title: "Doctor Mellifluus: his praise of Jesus Christ, in fact, 'runs like honey.'" Benedict XVI observed that "the abbot of Clairvaux does not tire of repeating that only one name counts, that of Jesus the Nazarene. 'Arid is all food of the soul,' [the saint] confesses, 'if it is not sprinkled with this oil; insipid, if it is not seasoned with this salt. What is written has no flavor for me, if I have not read Jesus.' And he concludes: 'When you discuss or speak, nothing has flavor for me, if I have not heard resound the name of Jesus.'"
The Pope said Bernard's concept of true knowledge of God consists in a "personal, profound experience of Jesus Christ and of his love.  And this, dear brothers and sisters," he said, "is true for every Christian: Faith is above all a personal, intimate encounter with Jesus, and to experience his closeness, his friendship, his love; only in this way does one learn to know him ever more, and to love and follow him ever more. May this happen to each one of us."
JOHN OF SALISBURY: NATURAL LAW MUST INSPIRE POSITIVE LAW
VATICAN CITY, 16 DEC 2009 (VIS) - Benedict XVI focused his catechesis during this morning's general audience on the figure of John of Salisbury, a philosopher and theologian born in England towards the beginning of the twelfth century.

  Educated in Paris and Chartres, John of Salisbury acted as counsellor to various archbishops of Canterbury at whose service he placed his vast knowledge and diplomatic skills. One of these was Thomas Becket whom John followed into exile in France when that archbishop fell into dispute with King Henry II who wished to affirmed his authority over the Church and thus limit her freedom. As an elderly man, John was appointed bishop of Chartres, where he remained until his death in 1180.

  The Pope mentioned John of Salisbury's two principal works: the "Metaloghicon" (In defence of logic) and the "Policraticus" (The man of government). In the first of these John expresses the view that "believers and theologians who study the treasure of the faith deeply also open themselves to the practical knowledge which guides everyday actions; in other words, to moral laws and the exercise of virtue".
  The central thesis of the "Policraticus" is that there exists "an objective and immutable truth, the origin of which is in God, a truth accessible to human reason and which concerns practical and social activities. This is a natural law from which human legislation, and political and religious authorities, must draw inspiration in order to promote the common good". This natural law is characterised by a property "which John calls 'equity', by which he means giving each person his rights. From here arise precepts which are legitimate to all peoples and which cannot under any circumstances be abrogated".
  "The question of the relationship between natural law and positive law, as mediated by equity, is still of great importance", said Benedict XVI. "Indeed, in our own time, and especially in certain countries, we are witnessing a disquieting fracture between reason, which has the task of discovering the ethical values associated with human dignity, and freedom, which has the responsibility of accepting and promoting those values.
  "Perhaps", he added, "John of Salisbury would remind us today that the only 'equitable' laws are those that defend the sacredness of human life and reject the legitimacy of abortion, euthanasia and unrestrained genetic experimentation; the laws that respect the dignity of marriage between a man and a woman, that are inspired by a correct understanding of the secularism of the State - a secularism that must always include the safeguarding of religious freedom - and that seek subsidiarity and solidarity at the national and international level.
  "Otherwise", the Holy Father concluded: "we would end up with what John of Salisbury defined as the 'tyranny of the prince' or, as we would say, 'the dictatorship of relativism', a relativism which, as I said some years ago, 'recognises nothing as definite and has as its ultimate measure only the self and its own desires'".  AG/JOHN OF SALISBURY/...  VIS 091216 (510)
1155 St. Bernard of Valdeiglesias Patron saint of Candelada, Spain; a monk at Valdeiglesias, possibly a Cistercian.
1158 St. Ronald martyr warrior chieftain  fulfilling the pledge by erecting the cathedral of St. Magnus at Kirkwall.
In the Orkney Islands, Scotland. According to tradition, he made a vow to build a church, fulfilling the pledge by erecting the cathedral of St. Magnus at Kirkwall. Ronald was later murdered by a group of rebelling warriors and was venerated as a martyr at Kirkwall.
1180 St. Herbert Hoscam Archbishop Patron saint of Conze, Italy. He was English by birth but served as prelate of the Basilicata area.
Apud montem Senárium, in Etrúria, natális sancti Manétti Confessóris, e septem Fundatóribus Ordinis Servórum beátæ Maríæ Vírginis; qui, eídem hymnos dicens, exspirávit.  Ipsíus autem ac Sociórum festum prídie Idus Februárii celebrátur.
   
St. Manetto On Mount Senario in Tuscany, the birthday of, confessor, one of the seven founders of the Order of the Servites of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who died as he was repeating a hymn to her.  His feast, with that of his companions, is kept on the 12th of February.
1866 Bd Mary De Mattias, Virgin, Foundress of The Sisters Adorers of The Precious Blood
When Mary de Mattias began the work that was to develop into a congregation for adoration of the Precious Blood of Christ and the education of children she met a requirement of her time, which needed, in the words of Pope Pius XI, "a general reform, especially by way of better instruction of minds and a renewed purifying of habits".
  Born in 1805, Mary was the eldest of the four children of a lawyer, John de Mattias, and Octavia de Angelis his wife, who lived at Vallecorsa on the borders of Lazio and Campania.  Shortly after her seventeenth birthday St Caspar del Bufalo gave a mission in the parish church, which was the occasion of her hearing a definite call to some special work for the good of souls.  Within a little time she had come to know the Venerable John Merlini, disciple of St Caspar and his successor at the head of the Missioners of the Precious Blood;  he became her director and adviser, and remained so for the rest of her life.
  In 1834 Mary accepted an invitation from her bishop, Mgr Lais, who was also the administrator of Anagni, to take charge of a school at Acuto in that diocese.  She went there determined not simply to be a school-mistress but to establish a religious house as well. In the following year came her first recruit, Anne Farrotti, they committed themselves to foundation of a congregation under the inspiration of the example of Canon del Bufalo's missioners.
   Mary had already begun to extend her activities from school-children to older girls and to married women. Six more recruits soon followed.  Mary de Mattias, like St Lucy Filippini, had a great gift of easy and convincing speech, which she used to much advantage in her catechetical and biblical instructions and in the girls' and women's societies that she organized; and at the end of 1837 she began to conduct "spiritual exercises" for mothers of families, which were a great success. This evoked the inevitable unfavourable comment and invoking of I Corinthians xiv 34 (though they were not in fact held in the church), but after due inquiry Bishop Muccioli approved.  When women began to attend the May devotions in the school the parish-priest objected and put a stop to it but Mary was vindicated by the rural dean, much to the joy of the mothers.
  The canonical process of her beatification makes it plain that Mary's eloquence really was such: she loved quiet and silence,  "She was not loquacious".
  In 1840 a second school was taken over, under the auspices of the Missioners of the Precious Blood, in Mary's old home at Vallecorsa, and other foundations followed, the work for adult women and girls increasing at the same time.  Between 1847 and 1851 two houses were founded in Rome itself through the interest of a Russian widow, Princess Zena Volkonska; and there two English prelates, Mgr George Talbot and Mgr (later cardinal) Edward Howard, became her good friends. It is recorded of an English member of the congregation that Mother de Mattias had gently to rebuke her for her endless boasting about English politeness "Calvary is the school of good manners ", she said.
  The rapid expansion of the Sisters Adorers of the Precious Blood of course did not take place without difficulties and disappointments, so many trials for the faith and spiritual integrity of Mother de Mattias.  But at last hat robust energy began to tire and her health to weaken, and she died at Rome on August 20, 1866, in her sixty-first year.  At the time of her beatification in 1950 her congregation had nearly 400 establishments, many of them in the United States and other countries, including schools of all grades and kinds.
The first biography of Bd Mary de Mattias was by Don Merlini. A full official life was published in Rome in 1950, written by a Benedictine, Dame M. Eugenia Pietromarchi .
1912 1890 Wilhelm und Katharina Booth Anglikanische Kirche: 20. August

William Booth wurde am 10.04.1829 in Nottingham geboren. Mit 15 Jahren entschied er sich für Christus und trat den Methodisten bei. 1854 wurde er ordiniert und 1861 begann er seine Tätigkeit als selbständiger Evangelist. Am 2. Juli 1865 hielt er eine erste Versammlung in Whitechapel. Dieser Tag gilt als Gründungstermin der Heiilsarmee. Botth wurde der erste General de Heilsarmee, sein Sohn Bramwell und seine Tochter Evangeline folgten ihm nach. William Booth starb am 20.08.1912 in London.

Catherine Mumford, Tochter eines methodistischen Laienpredigers, wurde am 17.01.1829 in Ashbourne geboren. 1852 lernte sie ihren künftigen Ehemann kennen. Beide engagierten sich für christliches soziales Handeln. Catherine war auch in der Frauenbewegung aktiv und forderte, daß auch Frauen predigen dürften. Obwohl ihr Ehemann diese Forderung ablehnte, predigte Catherine ab 1860. Sie engagierte sich für Fabrikarbeiterinnen und Prostituierte, evangelisierte mit ihrem Mann in der Heilsarmee und zog acht Kinder auf. Sie starb am 4.10.1890 in Clacton-on-Sea.


Biographie Catherine Booth (Wikipedia)
Biographie William Booth (Wikipedia)

 Friday   Saints of Day August  19 Quartodécimo Kaléndas Septémbris     
Pope Francis  PRAYER INTENTIONS FOR  August 2016
Universal:   That sports may be an opportunity for friendly encounters between peoples and may contribute to peace in the world.
Evangelization:  That Christians may live the Gospel, giving witness to faith, honesty, and love of neighbor.

God Bless Mother Angelica 1923-2016
ewtnmissionaries.com

On Death and Life
"Man Needs Eternity -- and Every Other Hope, for Him, Is All Too Brief"
Пресвятая Богородице спаси нас!    (Santíssima Mãe de Deus, salva-nos!)
     
                                           
 
40 Days for Life  11,000+ saved lives in 2015
We are the defenders of true freedom.
  May our witness unveil the deception of the "pro-choice" slogan.
40 days for Life Campaign saves lives Shawn Carney Campaign Director www.40daysforlife.com
Please help save the unborn they are the future for the world

It is a great poverty that a child must die so that you may live as you wish
 -- Mother Teresa

 Saving babies, healing moms and dads, 'The Gospel of Life'  Mother Teresa
 Saving babies, healing moms and dads, 'The Gospel of Life'
 'The Gospel of Life'


"Man Needs Eternity -- and Every Other Hope, for Him, Is All Too Brief"
It Makes No Sense Not To Believe In GOD 
Every Christian must be a living book
wherein one can read the teaching of the gospel

Jesus brings us many Blessings
 
The more we pray, the more we wish to pray. Like a fish which at first swims on the surface of the water, and afterwards plunges down, and is always going deeper; the soul plunges, dives, and loses itself in the sweetness of conversing with God. -- St. John Vianney

  Month by Month of Saintly Dedications


The Rosary html Mary Mother of GOD -- Her Rosary Here
Mary Mother of GOD Mary's Divine Motherhood: FEASTS OF OUR LADY
     of the Virgin Mary to those who recite the Rosary

May 9 – Our Lady of the Wood (Italy, 1607) 
Months of Dedication
January is the month of the Holy Name of Jesus since 1902;
March is the month of Saint Joseph since 1855;
May, the month of Mary, is the oldest and most well-known Marian month, officially since 1724;
June is the month of the Sacred Heart since 1873;
July is the month of the Precious Blood since 1850;
August is the month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary;
September is the month of Our Lady of Sorrows since 1857;
October is the month of the Rosary since 1868;
November is the month of the Holy Souls in Purgatory since 1888;
December is the month of the Immaculate Conception.

In all, five months of the year are dedicated to Mary.
The idea of dedicating months came from Rome and promotion of the month of Mary owes much to the Jesuits.  arras.catholique.fr


Pray that the witness of 40 Days for Life bears abundant fruit, and that we begin again each day to storm the gates of hell until God welcomes us into the gates of heaven.

If you seek patience, you will find no better example than the cross. Great patience occurs in two ways:
either when one patiently suffers much, or when one suffers things which one is able to avoid and yet does not avoid.
Christ endured much on the cross, and did so patiently, because when he suffered he did not threaten;
he was led like a sheep to the slaughter and he did not open his mouth.-- St. Thomas Aquinas


We begin our day by seeing Christ in the consecrated bread, and throughout the day we continue to see Him in the torn bodies of our poor. We pray, that is, through our work, performing it with Jesus, for Jesus and upon Jesus.
The poor are our prayer. They carry God in them. Prayer means praying everything, praying the work.
We meet the Lord who hungers and thirsts, in the poor.....and the poor could be you or I or any person kind enough to show us his or her love and to come to our place.
Because we cannot see Christ, we cannot express our love to Him in person.
But our neighbor we can see, and we can do for him or her what we would love to do for Jesus if He were visible.
-- Mother Teresa
My God, I believe, I adore, I trust and I love Thee.  I beg pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not love Thee.  O most Holy trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I adore Thee profoundly.
 I offer Thee the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the Tabernacles of the world,  in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference by which He is offended,
and by the infite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

I beg the conversion of poor sinners,  Amen Fatima Prayer, Angel of Peace
Mary's Divine Motherhood
Pope Francis and Pope Benedict XVI { 2013 } Catholic Church In China { article here}
1648 to1930 St. Augustine Zhao Rong and 120 Companions Christianity arrived in China by way of Syria -- 600s.
        Depending on China's relations with outside world,
Christianity for centuries was free to grow or forced to operate secretly.

How do I start the Five First Saturdays? 
Called in the Gospel “the Mother of Jesus,” Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as “the Mother of my Lord” (Lk 1:43; Jn 2:1; 19:25; cf. Mt 13:55; et al.). In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh, was none other than the Father's eternal Son, the second person of the Holy Trinity. Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly Mother of God (Theotokos). 
Catechism of the Catholic Church 495, quoting the Council of Ephesus (431): DS 251.
“The Blessed Virgin was eternally predestined, in conjunction with the incarnation of the divine Word, to be the Mother of God. By decree of divine Providence, she served on earth as the loving mother of the divine Redeemer, an associate of unique nobility, and the Lord's humble handmaid. She conceived, brought forth, and nourished Christ.”
The voice of the Father is heard, the Son enters the water, and the Holy Spirit appears in the form of a dove.
   THE spirit and example of the world imperceptibly instil the error into the minds of many that there is a kind of middle way of going to Heaven; and so, because the world does not live up to the gospel, they bring the gospel down to the level of the world. It is not by this example that we are to measure the Christian rule, but words and life of Christ. All His followers are commanded to labour to become perfect even as our heavenly Father is perfect, and to bear His image in our hearts that we may be His children. We are obliged by the gospel to die to ourselves by fighting self-love in our hearts, by the mastery of our passions, by taking on the spirit of our Lord.
   These are the conditions under which Christ makes His promises and numbers us among His children, as is manifest from His words which the apostles have left us in their inspired writings. Here is no distinction made or foreseen between the apostles or clergy or religious and secular persons. The former, indeed, take upon themselves certain stricter obligations, as a means of accomplishing these ends more perfectly; but the law of holiness and of disengagement of the heart from the world is geeral and binds all the followers of Christ.

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THE EUCHARIST, A MYSTERY TO BE BELIEVED POST-SYNODAL APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION
SACRAMENTUM CARITATIS OF THE HOLY FATHER BENEDICT XVI
There are over 10,000 named saints beati  from history
 and Roman Martyology Orthodox sources

Miracles by Century 100   200   300   400   500   600   700    800   900   1000    1100   1200   1300   1400  1500  1600  1700  1800   1900  Miracles_BLay Saints
Morning Prayer and Hymn    Meditation of the Day    Prayer for Priests    Our Bartholomew Family Prayer List  Here
We are called upon with the whole Church militant on earth to join in praising and thanking God for the grace and glory he has bestowed on his saints. At the same time we earnestly implore Him to exert His almighty power and mercy in raising us from our miseries and sins, healing the disorders of our souls and leading us by the path of repentance to the company of His saints, to which He has called us.
   They were once what we are now, travellers on earth they had the same weaknesses, which we have. We have difficulties to encounter so had the saints, and many of them far greater than we can meet with; obstacles from kings and whole nations, sometimes from the prisons, racks and swords of persecutors. Yet they surmounted these difficulties, which they made the very means of their virtue and victories. It was by the strength they received from above, not by their own, that they triumphed. But the blood of Christ was shed for us as it was for them and the grace of our Redeemer is not wanting to us; if we fail, the failure is in ourselves.
   THE saints and just, from the beginning of time and throughout the world, who have been made perfect, everlasting monuments of God’s infinite power and clemency, praise His goodness without ceasing; casting their crowns before His throne they give to Him all the glory of their triumphs: “His gifts alone in us He crowns.”
“The saints must be honored as friends of Christ and children and heirs of God, as John the theologian and evangelist says: ‘But as many as received him, he gave them the power to be made the sons of God....’ Let us carefully observe the manner of life of all the apostles, martyrs, ascetics and just men who announced the coming of the Lord. And let us emulate their faith, charity, hope, zeal, life, patience under suffering, and perseverance unto death, so that we may also share their crowns of glory” Exposition of the Orthodox Faith

Called in the Gospel the Mother of Jesus, Mary is acclaimed by Elizabeth, at the prompting of the Spirit and even before the birth of her son, as the Mother of my Lord (Lk 1:43; Jn 2:1; 19:25; cf. Mt 13:55; et al.). In fact, the One whom she conceived as man by the Holy Spirit, who truly became her Son according to the flesh, was none other than the Father's eternal Son,  the second person of the Holy Trinity.
Hence the Church confesses that Mary is truly Mother of God (Theotokos).
Catechism of the Catholic Church 495, quoting the Council of Ephesus (431): DS 251.
Nine First Fridays Devotion to the Sacred Heart ... From the writings of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
On Friday during Holy Communion, He said these words to me, His unworthy slave, if I mistake not:
I promise you in the excessive mercy of my Heart that its all-powerful love will grant to all those who receive Holy Communion on nine first Fridays of consecutive months the grace of final repentance; they will not die under my displeasure or without receiving their sacraments, my divine Heart making itself their assured refuge at the last moment.
Margaret Mary was inspired by Christ to establish the Holy Hour and to pray lying prostrate with her face to the ground from eleven till midnight on the eve of the first Friday of each month, to share in the mortal sadness.
He endured when abandoned by His Apostles in His Agony, and to receive holy Communion on the first Friday of every month. In the first great revelation, He made known to her His ardent desire to be loved by men and His design of manifesting His Heart with all Its treasures of love and mercy, of sanctification and salvation.
He appointed the Friday after the octave of the feast of Corpus Christi as the feast of the Sacred Heart; He called her the Beloved Disciple of the Sacred Heart, and the heiress of all Its treasures. The love of the Sacred Heart was the fire which consumed her, and devotion to the Sacred Heart is the refrain of all her writings. In her last illness she refused all alleviation, repeating frequently: What have I in heaven and what do I desire on earth, but Thee alone, O my God, and died pronouncing the Holy Name of Jesus.
With regard to this promise it may be remarked: (1) that our Lord required Communion to be received on a particular day chosen by Him; (2) that the nine Fridays must be consecutive; (3) that they must be made in honor of His Sacred Heart, which means that those who make the nine Fridays must practice the devotion and must have a great love for our Lord; (4) that our Lord does not say that those who make the nine Fridays will be dispensed from any of their obligations or from exercising the vigilance necessary to lead a good life and overcome temptation; rather He implicitly promises abundant graces to those who make the nine Fridays to help them to carry out these obligations and persevere to the end; (5) that perseverance in receiving Holy Communion for nine consecutive First Firdays helps the faithful to acquire the habit of frequent Communion, which our Lord eagerly desires; and (6) that the practice of the nine Fridays is very pleasing to our Lord He promises such great reward, and all Catholics should endeavor to make nine Fridays.
How do I start the Five First Saturdays? by Fr. Tom O'Mahony.
On July 13,1917, Our Lady appeared for the third time to the three children of Fatima an showed them the vision of hell and made the now - famous thirteen prophecies. In this vision Our Lady said that 'GOD WISHES TO ESTABLISH IN THE WORLD DEVOTION to Her Immaculate Heart and that She would come TO ASK FOR THE COMMUNION OF REPARATION ON THE FIRST SATURDAYS...'  Eight years later, on December 10, 1925, Our Lady did indeed come back. She appeared (with the Child Jesus) to Lucia in the convent of the Dorothean Sisters in Pontevedra.
The Child Jesus spoke first:
'HAVE COMPASSION ON THE HEART OF YOUR MOST HOLY MOTHER WHICH IS COVERED WITH THORNS WITH WHICH UNGRATEFUL MEN PIERCE IT AT EVERY MOMENT, WHILE THERE IS NO ONE TO REMOVE THEM WITH AN ACT OF REPARATION.'

THE GREAT PROMISE
Our Lady then said: 'MY DAUGHTER LOOK AT MY HEART SURROUNDED WITH THORNS WITH WHICH UNGRATEFUL MEN PIERCE IT AT EVERY MOMENT BY THEIR BLASPHEMIES AND INGRATITUDE. YOU, AT LEAST, TRY TO CONSOLE ME, AND SAY THAT I PROMISE TO ASSIST AT THE HOUR OF DEATH WITH ALL THE GRACES NECESSARY FOR SALVATION, ALL THOSE WHO, ON THE FIRST SATURDAY OF FIVE CONSECUTIVE MONTHS GO TO CONFESSION AND RECEIVE HOLY COMMUNION, RECITE FIVE DECADES OF THE ROSARY AND KEEP ME COMPANY FOR A QUARTER OF AN HOUR WHILE MEDITATING ON MYSTERIES OF THE ROSARY, WITH THE INTENTION OF MAKING REPARATION TO ME.'

The Five Reasons
Lucia once asked this question of Our Lord and received as an answer: 'MY DAUGHTER, THE MOTIVE IS SIMPLE, THERE ARE FIVE KINDS OF OFFENCES AND BLASPHEMIES UTTERED AGAINST THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY: (1) BLASPHEMIES AGAINST THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION: (2) BLASPHEMIES AGAINST HER VIRGINITY: (3) BLASPHEMIES AGAINST HER DIVINE MATERNITY: (4) BLASPHEMIES OF THOSE WHO OPENLY SEEK TO FOSTER IN THE HEARTS OF CHILDREN INDIFFERENCE OR EVEN HATRED FOR THIS IMMACULATE MOTHER: (5) THE OFFENCES OF THOSE WHO DIRECTLY OUTRAGE HER IN HOLY IMAGES.'
From the above, it is easy to see that each of the Five Saturdays can correspond to a specific offence. By offering the graces received during each First Saturday as reparation for the offence being prayed for, the participant can hope to help remove the thorns from Our Lady's Heart.
What Do I Have To Do?
The devotion of First Saturdays, as requested by Our Lady of Fatima, carries with it the assurance of salvation. However, to derive profit from such a great promise of Our Lady, the devotion must be properly understood and duly performed.
The requirements as stipulated by Our Lady are as follows:
(1) CONFESSION, (2) COMMUNION, (3) FIVE DECADES OF THE ROSARY, (4) MEDITATION ON ONE OR MORE OF THE ROSARY MYSTERIES FOR FIFTEEN MINUTES, (5) TO DO ALL THESE THINGS IN THE SPIRIT OF REPARATION TO THE IMMACULATE HEART OF MARY, and (6) TO OBSERVE ALL THESE PRACTICES ON THE FIRST SATURDAY OF FIVE CONSECUTIVE MONTHS.
(1) CONFESSION: A reparative confession means that the confession should not only be good (valid and licit), but also be offered in the spirit of reparation, in this case, to Mary's Immaculate Heart. This confession may be made on the First Saturday itself or some days before or after the First Saturday within the preceding octave would suffice.
(2) COMMUNION: The communion of reparation must be sacramental duly received with the intention of making reparation. This offering, like the confession, is an interior act and so no external action to express the intention is needed.
(3) THE ROSARY: The Rosary mentioned here was indicated by the Portuguese word 'terco' which is commonly employed to denote a Rosary of five decades, since it forms a fourth of the full Rosary of 20 decades. This too must recited in a spirit of reparation.
(4) MEDITATION FOR FIFTEEN MINUTES: Here the meditation on one mystery or more is to be made without simultaneous recitation of the Rosary decade. As indicated, the meditation may be either on one mystery alone for 15 minutes, or on all 20 mysteries, spending about one minute on each mystery, or again, on two or more mysteries during the period. This can also be made before each decade spending three minutes or more in considering the mystery of the particular decade. This meditation has likewise to be made in the spirit of reparation to the Immaculate Heart.
(5) THE SPIRIT OF REPARATION: All these acts, as said above, have to be done with the intention of offering reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary for the offences committed against Her. Everyone who offends Her commits, so to speak, a two-fold offence, for these sins also offend her Divine Son, Christ, and so endanger our salvation. They give bad example to others and weaken the strength of society to withstand immoral onslaughts. Such devotions therefore make us consider not only the enormity of the offence against God, but also the effect of sins on human society as well as the need for undoing these social effects even when the offender repents and is converted. Further, this reparation emphasises our responsibility towards sinners who, themselves, will not pray and make reparation for their sins.
(6) FIVE CONSECUTIVE FIRST SATURDAYS: The idea of the Five First Saturdays is obviously to make us persevere in the devotional acts for these Saturdays and overcome initial difficulties. Once this is done, Our Lady knows that the person would become devoted to Her immaculate Heart and persist in practising such devotion on all First Saturdays, working thereby for personal self-reform and for the salvation of others.

Unless Russia is converted, the movement against God and for sin will continue to spread, promoting wars and persecutions, and making the attainment for peace and justice impossible for this world. One means of obtaining Russia's conversion is to practise the Fatima Message. The stakes are so great that to encourage Catholics to practise the devotion of the First Saturdays,