Bernard is given the honorary name, The Last of the Fathers. Born in Dijon, France, in 1090, Bernard joined the new order of Cistercians at Claivaux in 1111. He took all his brothers with him into the monastery. Bernard was a remarkable leader, orator and preacher. He had powerful devotion to Our Lady and wrote many works praising her virue. His Commentaries on the Song of Song are among the most beaufiful works of the Church.
At a time when Europe was in turmoil, as the new nation states began to assert themselves, Bernard was often called from his monastery to settle disputes between princes. Having taken a vow of "Stability" i.e. to live in one place for the rest of his life, Bernard thought of his place as being with the monks. However, he was obedient to the Pope and did as he was asked. Eventually one of his disciples became Pope Innocent III.
Bernard taught many things. But my favorite saying of his is a Latin phrase, "Consentere est salvere"--to consent is to be saved. By this he means if we consent to the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives we shall be saved...but we must do so daily and consistently.