July 5, 2017

Saint Bernard of Clairvaux

Saint Bernard of Clairvaux (1091 – 1153) came from noble Burgansky names, who had his family residence, the castle of Fontaine, near Dijon. His biography of his youth was connected with the Church. Mother Bernarda was a woman ascetic direction, wanted to be a nun, married against their will. Children inherited the austerity of the mother; there were many of them; they all took monastic vows. Bernard studied at school. He soon became an enemy of philosophy; he drew against her dialectic, which he well learned. A handsome young man who knew how to attract people, he is 23 year of life came (1113) by a monk in the Cistercian (Cytoscope) Abbey, the former by the Church of the Cistercian order. Together took vows thirty of his friends, went to the monks in his opinion.

Bernard spent two years in Sitecom Abbey, famous for the severity of his asceticism, then was appointed (1115) the prior of the monastery founded by the Cistercians in the desert, the harsh valley of the river Oba (Aube), in the Duchy of Burgundy, then. This valley served as a den of robbers; now she had the name “Light (famous) Valley,” Clara Vallis, Clairvaux, and soon the name became really famous in the West. Young prior Bernard of Clairvaux was the weakest of the monks’ health, but surpassed them all with feats of asceticism, fasting, prayers duration, severity to themselves, and mercy to others; all the spare hours he spent in reading the Bible in devout meditation among the forests. Under his leadership the monastery of Clairvaux became a temple of chastity and of all the ascetic virtues, eclipsed his fame Stokoe Abbey; number received into the community of Bernard of Clairvaux had increased to such an extent that it took to build in Klervossky the valley to another monastery. From Clervaux out bishops, archbishops, cardinals; one of the monks of Clairvaux had become even Pope; these spiritual dignitaries all his life continued to honor Bernard as a coach. Originated 170 monasteries, recognize Clervaux his Archdiocese. Bernard became the Advisor of the Emperor. Pope Eugene III, a former monk of Clairvaux, was considered the greatest virtue of his unconditional reverence to Bernard, his mentor; Bernard gave him “a Reflection on papal Sana’a”, in which he said that the Pope should be the judge of the peoples and peacemaker, humble, and noble-shy Madding crowd.

The energy and learning with which Bernard of Clairvaux defended Church dogma against thinkers who deviate from it, gave him a strong influence on the clergy, he attracted princes grace of its secular education, the people of the sanctity of life and friendliness. Nobles and commoners with the same readily accepted his teachings. Exhausting yourself ascetic self-torture, he yet showed the same tireless activity. One of his biographers says: “He brought comfort to the saddened, helping the oppressed, the Council found it difficult, healing the sick, aid the poor”. He cared only about the salvation of the soul; he abhorred the pleasures that did not even admire the beauty of nature. Once Bernard rode all day on the lovely shores of Lake Geneva and immersed in his thoughts, did not notice the scenic area. The reverence showed to him by the people of all classes, did not make him haughty; he was modest and shy; he was eloquent and hot only when performed to protect the Church.

Saint Bernard of Clairvaux was a staunch fighter for the rights of the Pope and for the purity of Church doctrine, but was silent about the vices of the clergy, the abuses of papal authority. He was the solid Foundation of innocent II against the antipope Anacletus II, conquered Italian city, brought from Germany by the Emperor Lothair to protect him, but told him about the greed and lust for power of the papal government. Bernard wanted to give the Church victory over the Muslims, its external opponents and philosophers, who were considered internal enemies. He brought Christian rulers to go in the Second crusade; but for a few years before, Sansom Cathedral (1140), in the presence of the French king and many nobles demanded the condemnation of the rationalist Abelard and his disciple Arnold of Brescia; he pursued the fleeing Republicans and the heretic Arnold, arousing his Epistles, the persecution of him. In all the Church Affairs of that time, the voice of Bernard of Clairvaux had a strong significance and is often a decisive influence. He was offered five chairs from the most high; but he preferred the monastery of Clairvaux Shine them. His students occupied many Episcopal seats. Saint Bernard of Clairvaux was the reconciler of kings, the Supreme authority of the Western Church of his time. All the Nations of the West listened to his voice; his Epistles, written with great care about elegance and picturesque style, was read in all the Western lands.

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