By Christina Hermoso
Roman Catholics will honor on Monday the memory of Saint Bernardine (San Bernardino) of Siena, one of the most widely venerated saints of the Catholic Church.
Popularly known as the Apostle of the Holy Name of Jesus, St. Bernardine was considered as the greatest and most influential preacher of his day. Tthe revered Italian saint led a missionary life of one whom Pope Pius II called “a second Paul” because many listened to him and were convinced of his teachings and sermons in the same way during the time of St. Paul.
St. Bernardine said, “The name of preachers is the glory of the preachers.” At the end of every sermon, he blesses the people while raising a tablet inscribed with the letters “J.H.S.” which stands for “Jesus Hominum Salvator” or “Jesus Man’s Savior.”
Born in Siena, Italy in the year 1380, he joined the Franciscans of the Strict Observance in 1403 and was ordained priest in 1404. In 1430, as the Vicar General of the Observant Franciscans, he included the study of Theology and the Canon of Law in the regular formation of priests. He died in 1444 and was canonized on May 24, 1450.