Bernardino Ochino

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Bernardino Ochino (1487–1564) was an Italian Reformer.



Bernardino Ochino was born in Siena son of the barber Domenico Ochino, and at the age of 7 or 8 around 1504 was entrusted to the Minorite order of Franciscan Friars, then from 1510 he studied medicine at Perugia.

1534, transfer to the Capuchins

At the age of 38, perhaps craving a stricter governance, Ochino transferred himself in 1534 to the newly-founded Order of Friars Minor Capuchin.

He had already become famous for zeal and eloquence, and was the intimate friend of the Spaniard Juan de Valdés, of Pietro Bembo, Vittoria Colonna, Pietro Martire, Carnesecchi, and others destined to incur the suspicion of heresy, either from the moderation of their characters or from the evangelical tincture of their theology.

1538, vicar-general of the Capuchin order

In 1538 he was elected vicar-general of his order. In 1539, urged by Pietro Bembo, he visited Venice and delivered a remarkable course of sermons, showing a decided tendency to the doctrine of justification by faith, which appears still more evidently in his Dialogues published the same year.

He was suspected and denounced, but nothing ensued until the establishment of the Inquisition in Rome in June 1542, at the instigation of Cardinal Giovanni Pietro Carafa, the first Grand Inquisitor, and later Pope Paul IV. Ochino almost immediately received a citation to Rome, and set out to obey it about the middle of August. According to his own statement, he was deterred from presenting himself at Rome by the warnings of Cardinal Contarini, whom he found at Bologna, dying of poison administered by the reactionary party.

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