Saint Bruno

St. Bruno (1030-1101) was born to a noble and prominent family in Cologne, Germany. He was well educated and excelled in his studies, and became a priest around the year 1055. He went on to direct and teach at the episcopal school at Reims for many years, earning a reputation as a learned scholar. After also serving as the chancellor of his archdiocese, he and a few companions left their positions in the diocese in order to follow a path of greater religious observance. In 1084 Bruno settled in the Chartreuse Mountains in France with a small group of scholars who, like himself, desired to become contemplative monks. This was the beginning of the Carthusian order founded by St. Bruno, combining the solitary life of hermits with the conventual life of religious observance. These alpine monks embraced a strictly disciplined life of poverty, labor, prayer, and fasting. After living six years of strict asceticism, St. Bruno was called to Rome by the Pope, who was his former student, to assist with the troubles and controversies rocking the Church. Bruno became a close advisor to the Pope and was allowed to return to monastic life only if he remained nearby within Italy, leading Bruno to establish a second Carthusian monastery there in 1095. St. Bruno wrote many manuscripts and commentaries during his life. His feast day is celebrated on October 6th.
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