Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Saint Bernard is the patron of bees, beekeepers, wax melters, wax refiners and candlemakers because he was called Doctor Mellifluus (the Honey sweet/ Honey tongued Doctor) on account of his brilliant and persuasive oratory (he drummed up the Second Crusade more or less single-handedly). Depending on your point of view, this may seem like a stretch.
Otherwise, his only recounted contact with the insect world occurred sometime after 1121 when the church at Foigny was infested with flies. (Anyone who has experienced Black flies in Maine or Greenheads on Cape Cod can sympathize, deeply.) Bernard came in, announced that the flies were excommunicated, and they all died.