Bernardo Tolomei (1272-1348).jpgAn obscure Benedictine saint is liturgically honored by the Church today. Saint Bernard Tolomei, (1272-1348) the founder of the Benedictine Congregation of the Blessed Virgin of Monte Oliveto  (near Siena) in 1319. He was beatified in 1644 but not canonized until 2009, though he was revered as a saint for a long time before Pope Benedict canonized him.

The Olivetan monks have an intense devotion to the Virgin Mary due to the founder’s attribution to the healing of his blindness by the intercession of the Virgin; their life has been one of penance and silence. Hence, Saint Bernard is called the “hero of penance and martyr of charity.” And this is our desire today.
Saint Bernard Tolomei’s brief biography can be read here and a set of photos can be viewed here.