Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence, Italy.
Abbot and Doctor of the Church
DOUBLE / WHITE
Bernard of Clairvaux (1091-1153), of a titled Burgundy family, won over to the service of Christ 31 other Burgundian noblemen, including four of his five brothers and an uncle as well, who with him entered the monastic life at the Abbey of Citeaux, of "strict" Benedictine observance, which had been founded shortly before by SS. Robert, Alberic, and Stephen Harding. Their arrival gave new vigor to the Cistercian Order. Bernard was soon sent to found a Cistercian house at Clairvaux, and under his direction the fame of the new monastery spread throughout the world. There his aged father and youngest brother Nivard received the Cistercian habit from his hands. His spirit of austere strength and moving sweetness in the love of God and of the Blessed Virgin stamped itself on the age. He was the adviser of Popes and monarchs, the eloquent preacher of the Second Crusade, and inspired defender of the Faith against powerful schismatics and heretics.
Mass of a DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH, except
O God, may blessed Bernard intercede for us in heaven as he once instructed Your faithful on earth and directed them in the way of eternal salvation. Through our Lord . . .
LESSON Eccli 39:6-14 [Sirach]
The just man will give his heart to resort early to the Lord that made him, and he will pray in the sight of the most High. He will open his mouth in prayer, and will make supplication for his sins. For if it shall please the great Lord, he will fill him with the spirit of understanding: And he will pour forth the words of his wisdom as showers, and in his prayer he will confess to the Lord. And he shall direct his counsel, and his knowledge, and in his secrets shall he meditate. He shall shew forth the discipline he hath learned, and shall glory in the law of the covenant of the Lord. Many shall praise his wisdom, and it shall never be forgotten. The memory of him shall not depart away, and his name shall be in request from generation to generation. Nations shall declare his wisdom, and the church shall shew forth his praise.