Bishop and Doctor of the Church (340-397)
+ Ambrose, who was born into a noble Roman family, would go on to become one of the greatest theologians of the Church.
+ After completing his studies, he served in the government of the Roman Empire. However, in 374, while living in Milan, he was elected bishop of the city by the popular acclaim of both Catholic and Arian Christians. Because he was only a catechumen, he received the Sacrament of Baptism before being ordained on December 7.
+ Ambrose was loved by his people because of his fidelity as a pastor and his care for the poor. He was a prolific writer, who wrote on a wide range of topics, including the sacraments and Sacred Scripture.
+ Saint Ambrose baptized Saint Augustine of Hippo in 387.
+ A stanch defender of the laws of the Church and of true Christian teachings, Saint Ambrose died on April 4, 397.
+ Proclaimed a Doctor of the Church in 1298, he is honored as the patron of beekeepers and candle makers.
+ The remains of Saint Ambrose are enshrined with those of the martyrs Gervase and Protase, who died for their faith sometime in the second century. Honored as the patron saints of Milan, their relics were enshrined in that city—in a church that Saint Ambrose had built—in the year 386. The feast of these two holy martyrs is celebrated on June 19.
For prayer and reflection
“Whoever gathers water from the mountains and leads it to himself or draws it from springs, is himself a source of dew like the clouds. Fill your soul, then, with this water, so that your land may not be dry, but watered by your own springs.”—Saint Ambrose
On this day, we also remember Saint Mary Joseph Rosello. Foundress of the Institute of the Daughters of Mercy and champion of the poor and uneducated, she died in Savona, Italy, on December 7, 1888. She was canonized in 1949.
O God, who made the Bishop Saint Ambrose
a teacher of the Catholic faith
and a model of apostolic courage,
raise up in your Church men after your own heart
to govern her with courage and wisdom.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(from The Roman Missal)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.