Saint Bonaventure (c. 1217-1274) was born in Tuscany, Italy, of a noble family. He became a Franciscan friar, a bishop and later a cardinal.

His call to the monastic life was initiated by a miraculous cure received through the intercession of Saint Francis.

As a Franciscan, his intellectual talents were soon discovered and led him to teach and later to assume the job of Master of the Franciscan School at Paris.

Bonaventure was a contemporary of Thomas Aquinas; however, his theological writings offer a different perspective. His thought contributed greatly to the Church Council at Lyons, during which he died. His most systematic and extensive work is his “Commentary on the Sentences” of Peter Lombard.

Bonaventure denied the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and championed the knowledge given by God to Christians, as being far superior to all forms of mere human wisdom.

“The mouth of the righteous is exercised in wisdom: and his tongue will be talking of judgment.” (The day’s Gradual, page F 27, People’s Anglican Missal)