Wednesday, March 30, 2011

March 28: St. Venturino of Bergamo

St. Venturino was born April 9, 1304, in Bergamo, Italy.  He joined the Order of Friars Preachers at the convent of St. Stephen in January 22, 1319, a Dominican Order.  Here are some factoids that you might be interested in learning:

1.  From 1328 to 1335 he won fame preaching in all the cities of upper Italy, soon distinguishing himself as a brilliant preacher, attracting huge crowds.

2.  Pleased with his ability to reach large numbers of believers, he announced in 1335 his intention to go on a penitential pilgrimage to Rome with about thirty thousand of his converts.

3.  His purpose was misunderstood, and Pope Benedict XII, then residing at Avignon, thought that Venturino wished to make himself pope. He wrote letters to Giovanni Pagnotti, Bishop of Anagni, his spiritual vicar, to the Canons of St. Peter's and St. John Lateran's, and to the Roman senators empowering them to stop the pilgrimage.

4.  This decree was joined by one issued by the Dominicans themselves at the Chapter in London, condemning such pilgrimages.

5.  The pope's letters and commands did not reach Venturino in time, and he arrived in Rome, 21 March 1335. He was well received, and preached in various churches. Twelve days later he left Rome, without explanation, and the pilgrimage ended in disorder.

6.  He travelled to Avignon, and requested an audience with Benedict XII at Avignon; he was seized and cast into prison until 1343.

7.  By 1343, Pope Clement IV had now presided over the Church, and restored Venturino to favour.  He then appointed him to preach a crusade against the Turks on January 4, 1344, who were then menacing Europe.  His success was remarkable.

8.  He urged the pope to appoint Humbert II of Dauphin√©, whose friend and spiritual adviser he had been, leader of the crusade, but Humbert proved incapable and the crusade came to nothing.

9.  Venturino's writings consist of sermons (now lost) and letters.

10.  He died at Smyrna on March 28, 1346, at 41 years of age.



  1. That's a cool little bio you did there

  2. Great info, thanks for the post

  3. wow i haven't seen your blog before but this is a truly nifty idea!