Acta Sanctorum: Bl. Bernard Francis Hoyos (Nov 29)
November 29, 2023
Fr. John Colacino C.PP.S.


November 29
Bl. Bernard Francis de Hoyos
Life (1711-1735)
Bernardo de Hoyos was born in Torrelobatón, (Valladolid) on August 21, 1711. He studied in the Jesuit Colleges of Medina del Campo and Villagarcía de Campos, and in 1726 he entered the novitiate of the Society that was part of the latter college. Because of his young age (he was not yet fifteen years old) and his frail constitution, he had to seek the permission of his family and convince the Provincial before he could enter. While he was in the novitiate (1726-28), Aloysius Gonzaga and Stanislaus Kostka were canonized. Both saints were proposed as models to young Jesuits, but above all Bernardo was influenced by the example of Saint John Berchmans, whose canonization process was well underway. During the novitiate years Bernardo was initiated into the mystical life. Philosophy studies (Medina del Campo, 1728-1731) were a time of interior purification tested by the dryness of the dark night of the soul.
Bernardo studied theology (1731-35) at the College of Saint Ambrose of Valladolid. This is where the process of his spiritual life reached its culmination, making him a true mystic. In the extensive account of conscience he gave to Father John de Loyola, his Spiritual Director, in October 1732 he said: “I see that everything in my heart is moving towards God, drawn like iron to a magnet. It desires only God, searches only for God, and longs only for God….” Because of the clarity with which Bernardo was able to perceive and describe his inner life, his Director insisted that this young man was “far more advanced than a man of his age, with more knowledge than he could have acquired from books.” References in the internal reports of the Society (Catálogos trienales) speak of a strong temperament that he was always able to master, of his brilliant intelligence, of his tenacity in overcoming difficulties, of his capacity for cordial relationships, and of his qualifications for all ministries, especially for preaching.
On May 3, 1733, when Bernardo was 22 years old, he experienced the Lord giving him a mission that would become the only objective of his life: to propagate devotion to the Sacred Heart as a means of personal sanctification and as an effective means for
accomplishing the apostolate. When his friend, Fr. Agustín de Cardaveraz had to preach on the feast of Corpus Christi in Bilbao, he asked Bernardo to send him some notes that could be found in the community library in a book by Fr. José Gallifet: “De Cultu Sacratissimi Cordis Dei Jesu.” When Bernardo read the book, he said, “I felt in my spirit an extraordinary motion—strong, gentle, not abrupt or impetuous. I then placed myself before the Blessed Sacrament, offering myself to His Sacred Heart in order to cooperate as much as possible… in propagating devotion to it.”
The first thing that Bernardo then did was to consecrate himself to the Sacred Heart of Jesus on June 12, 1733, using the same formula written by St. Claude La Colombière fifty years earlier. However, this was not a grace received to be lived only interiorly. Bernardo believed that God was asking him to be an instrument communicating to others the riches of the Heart of Christ.
Among his collaborators were Fathers John de Loyola and Agustín de Cardaveraz. Father John was in charge of writing about “the essence and the soundness of this devotion.” The outline and the core of this book, entitled Hidden Treasure, belong to Bernardo. After overcoming not a few difficulties, it was finally published on October 21, 1734.
His apostolic approach would consist in distributing leaflets and prayer cards everywhere, founding confraternities and associations in honor of the Sacred Heart, asking that this theme be included in talks and preaching. He wrote to bishops and even to King
Philip V asking for support in requesting the Holy See’s approval of a special liturgical feast of the Sacred Heart.
On January 2, 1735 Bernardo was ordained a priest in Valladolid and on the 6th of the same month he celebrated his first mass in the chapel of St. Ignatius College. A few months later, Bernardo began tertianship there, but he was unable to finish because he contracted typhus and subsequently died on November, 29 1735.  His reputation for holiness spread immediately after his death.
On April 18, 2010 in Valladolid, Spain, Fr. Bernardo de Hoyos was beatified by Pope John Paul II.
Source: Adolfo Nicolás, Superior General of the Society of Jesus (April 12, 2010)
Scripture (Eph 3:14-21)

I kneel before the Father, from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.  Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

(Year A).  If I wished to say something about what takes place between my soul and its Spouse, I would dilate at great lengths, and in the end would be unable to say much about what is going on within me. The loving favors which this most loving Lord confers on souls are so great that they seem incredible to those who have not experienced them. It is a scintillation of heavenly glory, a thing divine, a celestial folly, a holy stupidity. ... It is to be as a soul enjoying the Divine Bosom, ravished in the arms of its Beloved. . . . It is a sweet dissolving, a liquefying, an igniting and a consuming of one’s self unceasingly in the fires of love.
All these things are gifts with which the Lord is preparing my soul for the mystical betrothal. And, before giving them to me, He reminds me of my sins and endows me with such a clear knowledge of my nothingness, of my lukewarmness, of my iniquities and ingratitude, that if, whilst this side of the balance falls, the other side, full of the knowledge of God and of His special love for me, did not rise, it would be enough to cause despair. In the midst of my confusion then do I cry out: “My soul doth magnify the Lord . . . because he that is mighty hath done and is doing great things to me!” [Luke 1:46]
I began to abandon myself to the immense, fathomless and boundless sea of Divinity, plunged into the deepest of its waves, my understanding vagrant, blinded by the great light on the high sea of the divine perfection. 
"My likeness which is engraved in your heart will serve as a shield to stop whosoever is not Mine from attempting to enter. See to it, then, that you do not become unworthy, for I do not wish the things of this world to occupy your heart. The hearts of My servants must be humble but magnanimous. In fear as well as in security, avoid excess. The most unfailing holiness is that which most resembles Mine. Now while I was a Man among men, I always dealt with them, being all things to them all, even though I was infinitely superior to all by My works."
"Merit does not consist in doing much, but in loving much. Sometimes it would be better for some to do less and to love more. The good thief did only a few good deeds, but he loved much. The laborers of the eleventh hour worked little, but they loved much…. Desires are very deserving if they be sincere; and, in a way, they are even safer than deeds, for in the latter vanity is often to be found! A proverb says that deeds are the proof of love and not fine words: deeds, however, are only the sign and not the proof of love, and since I know quite well which desires are sincere, I sometimes reward them as if they had been followed by deeds." (Visions)
Musical Selection
O Sacred heart, O love Divine
Do keep us near to Thee
And make our love so like to Thine
That we may holy be
Heart of Jesus hear
O heart of love Divine
Listen to our prayer
Make us always Thine
O temple pure, O house of gold
Our heaven here below
What sweet delight, what wealth untold
From Thee do ever flow
Ungrateful hearts, forgetful hearts
The hearts of all have been
To wound Thy side with cruel darts
Which they have made by sin

Loving God and Father, grant that we who honour the heavenly

birthday of Bernard de Hoyos may through his example make our

way to you. We ask this in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ, who

lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, forever and

ever.  Amen.