7 Dec: St. Ambrose

Today is the feast of St. Ambrose of Milan (+4 April 397), a titanic figure of the late 4th century who changed the shape of Church and State relations for a thousand years, who brought much of the wisdom of Greek writings to the West, and who helped to bring St. Augustine of Hippo into the fold.

I have written often about Ambrose in the past. 

Here are a few links which ought to keep your lips moving for a while (that’s a little patristiblogger joke … ).

Of late nights, library naps, and Ambrose



“Let the feet of our minds be stretched out”: Ambrose on “dew”

Jerome on Ambrose: “the black croaking raven”

St. Ambrose read without moving his lips!


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Andrew says:

    A couple of weeks ago I was reporting on an event in Melbourne, where a couple of orthodox kids disrupted a gathering of dissenters in Melbourne, Australia. Here is a link to this.


    But aside from reporting, I was part of the rabble-rousers as well, and as Paul Collins and co was constantly going on about what the Church needs, I also sitting in the front yelled out

    “Ubi Petrus Ibi Ecclesia”. Of course that was said by the veritable bishop of Milan, Ambrose, whose feast we celebrate today. Let us have more bishops like this, even if they are catechumens like he was.


  2. Cristhian says:

    Fr. Z!, plz fix the link, i would like to hear the exultet in the 2002 Missale Romanum. And by the way, it looks that you like a lot the story of agustine of hippo and all the other characters in it.

  3. Yes. It is safe to say that I like the story of Augustine.

  4. Andrew says:

    This in reference to the Jerome vs Ambrose comment, tua pace Pater.

    There is no mention of Jerome in any of Ambrose’s extant works. Of all the comments made by Jerome about Ambrose, even including those that are imputed to refer to Ambrose (since Ambrose is not named in them), some are favorable and some are not. But not one of the unfavorable comments mentions Ambrose by name. Every comment of Jerome mentioning Ambrose by name is favorable. It would be too long to list all of them, so allow me to give three examples: “1. In letter 14 to pope Damasus dated 374, Jerome writes: “Jungatur cum Beatitudine tua Ursinus; cum Ambrosio societur Auxentius. Absit hoc a Romana fide: sacrilegium tantum religiosa populorum corda non hauriant.” (Let Ursinus be paired up with your Holiness, and Auxentius with Ambrose: far be it from the Faith of Rome: may the people’s devout hearts not draw such plentiful sacrilage). This is a flattering reference to Ambrosius who is presented as praiseworthy in comparison to his predecessor Auxentius, who was a follower of Arius.

    2. In Chronicon Jerome writes: “Post Auxentii seram mortem Mediolanii Ambrosio episcopo constituto omnis ad fidem rectam Italia convertitur.” (After the late death of Auxentius in Milan and the installation of Ambrose as bishop, all of Italy is converted to the true Faith).

    And here is Jerome’s letter 22: ” … lege Ambrosii nostri quae nuper ad sororem scripsit opuscula. In quibus tanto se fudit eloquio …” (… read the works of our Ambrose who wrote recently to his sister where he shows such eloquence etc.) This letter is from year 384. Later in the year 392 Jerome writes again favorably of Ambrose, but I don’t wish to make this too long.

    Indeed authorities disagree and there is no unanimous consent about Jerome’s attitude to Ambrose – some say so, and others say otherwise. So now we’ve heard from another county – again.

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