Born to the French nobility. Military officer in the army of Blessed Charlemagne. Upon the death of his parents, he retired from the military, divided his property into three parts (one for the Church, one for the poor, one for his children), bought the monastery in Ambronay, and retired there. Abbot at Ambronay in 805. Archbishop of Vienne, France in 810; Bernard resisted the appointment but accepted after being ordered to do so by Charlemagne and Pope Saint Leo III. Worked to unite the Church in France and the East, trying to overcome their differences in the use and attitude to images. He became embroiled in the political division of lands in France, was ordered deposed by the winning side, and retired from public life to concentrate on the pastoral duties of his see. The town of Romans grew up around the place were he used to go for solitude.
- Book of Saints, by the Monks of Ramsgate
- Catholic Encyclopedia, by P A Fournet
- Catholic Online
- Our Sunday Visitor’s Encyclopedia of Saints