Oracle of the Twelfth Century. Abbot, Confessor and Doctor of the Church
Abbe Theodore Ratisbonne
Preface by Henry Edward Cardinal Manning, D.D.
“In all of history there is probably no other man who so dominated his times, so influenced its people and was so beloved by all as St. bernard of Clarivaux. Deciding to renounce the world and enter religion, he chose the newly founded Cistercians, the strictest of monastic orders, bringing with him 29 other men and thus beginning the meteoric growth of that order, which 40 years later, upon St. Bernard’s death, numbered some 160 houses all over Europe. Stemming from his incomparable example and holy writings came innumerable vocations to the religious life and many remarkable ‘conversions’ of prominent Churchmen to a serious practice of their religious duties – which changed the face of religion at that time.
“Soon his presence was in demand everywhere – to settle serious religious and political disputes and to advise at Church councils. (He attended six all together.) He was called upon to decide who was true Pope between Innocent II and Anacletus II, a question he settled single-handedly. Later, one by one, he convinced the European heads of state as to the validity of Innocent’s claim. But he also reconciled the claimants to the German Imperial throne, healed the insurrection of the Italian republics, ended the war of Robert of Sicily against the Pope, silenced the rationalism of Peter Abelard, squelched the errors of Arnold of Brescia, extirpated the heresies of Henry de Bruys, wrote the constitution of the Knights Templar, preached and inspired the Second Crusade, ended a pogrom against the Jews in Germany, verified the divine origin of the revelations of St. Hildegarde, stopped a war at Metz, and – prophesied, cast out devils, worked countless miracles, wrote books, destroyed heresy, expended himself in every direction on behalf of the great and small, and successfully accomplished every major commission given to him. ALl the while he was extremely frail and forever sick, took no joy in the world or pride in his accomplishments, and ever longed to return to his monastic cell.
Tan, Soft cover, 437 pages