St. Bernardine of Siena (1380-1444) was an Italian Franciscan, one of the most popular and effective preachers of his time. He spoke directly to the people and traveled all over Italy, drawing huge crowds. His sermons condemned the moral vices of society and inspired people to live lives of holiness. Bernardine was known for his devotion to the Holy Name of Jesus, and he created an insignia of the letters “IHS” (the first three letters of Jesus’ name in Greek) that become a sort of medieval logo for the faith. He is the patron saint of advertising and public relations and his feast day is celebrated on May 20.
“Whenever the divine favor chooses someone to receive a special grace, or to accept a lofty vocation, God adorns the person chosen with all the gifts needed to fulfill the task at hand.”
Questions for Reflection:
St. Bernardine was an effective and magnetic preacher and evangelizer for his day and age. Reflect on the moments in your life when you have experienced quality preaching. What made it so powerful? What effect did it have for you?
How might you become a more creative and dynamic spreader of the Good News?