He was born of noble parentage in Fontaines, Burgundy, in what is now east-central France. He entered the monastery at Citeaux in 1112. In addition, as his fame increased, noblemen, bishops, princes and popes sought his counsel.
Bernard also gained recognition because of the many miracles that occurred in his ministry It was reported, "From all quarters sick persons were conveyed to him by the friends who sought from him a cure."' The lame were healed, and people were delivered from countless diseases and infirmities.
On one occasion, a deaf-mute boy was instantly able both to hear and to speak as a result of Bernard's prayers. Shouting and cheering arose from the crowd of onlookers who set the boy on a wooden bench so that he could address them.2
The monk Gottfried tells of a young boy who, having been blind from birth, received his sight through the prayers of Bernard. As his eyes opened, the boy shouted, "I see day, I see everybody, I see people with hair." Clapping his hands in delight, he exclaimed, "My God, now I will no more dash my feet against the stones."3
2. Cairns, Christianity Through the Centuries, 155.
3. Schaff, Ante-Nicene Christianity, vol. 5 History of the Christian Church, 317.