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Bernadot, Marie Vincent

BERNADOT, MARIE VINCENT

Author, editor, and publisher; b. Escatalens, June 14, 1883; d. Labastide Lévêque, June 25, 1941. Born in southern France, Bernadot was of peasant stock. He studied at the Grand Seminary at Montauban and was ordained in 1906. After serving as a parish priest, Bernadot entered the Order of Preachers (the Dominicans) in 1912; made his noviceship at Fiesole, Italy; and studied at Rome. He returned to France during World War I, where he resided at the priory of Saint-Maximin. Bernadot wrote several books on the spiritual life, of which De l'Eucharistie à la Trinité was most influential. His L'Ordre des Frères Prêcheurs (191718) remains an authentic interpretation of the ideals and achievements of the Dominicans. In 1919, Bernadot founded the journal La Vie spirituelle, which helped enormously in the spiritual rebirth of France. Within a year, its circulation had reached 3,300, and the revenues enabled the editor to launch La Vie intellectuelle in 1928. His purpose was to enrich the interior life by this monthly commentary on current eventspolitical, religious, social, and artistic and to this end he attracted the talent of such authors as Jacques Maritain, François Mauriac, Paul Claudel, Étienne Gilson, Henri Daniel-Rops, and Pierre Henri Simon. In 1928, Bernadot moved to a new priory at Juvisy, near Paris, and founded the publishing house L'Éditions du Cerf, which later moved to Paris. He inaugurated a weekly, Sept (1934), which soon had a circulation of 50,000. His editorial policy became increasingly involved in current political events (e.g., he advocated collaboration with the socialists and declared that the Spanish Civil War was not a "holy crusade") and occasioned some shock and scandal. In August 1937, Bernadot had to give up his work on the weekly that he had created. However, some of his lay friends, among them Mauriac and Maritain, continued its publication under the name Temps présent, with the approbation of the hierarchy. Bernadot returned to his religious studies and wrote Notre Dame dans ma vie (1937). He also started the journal La Vie chrétienne avec Notre Dame, which developed after the Second World War into Fêtes et saisons and La Vie catholique illustrée.

Bibliography: La Vie spirituelle (Aug. 1941, Nov. 1944). m.v. bernadot, Lettres de direction (Paris 1946).

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