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St. Ambrose

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Saint Ambrose

Bishop, Confessor, & Doctor of the Church

Ambrose was born around the year of Our Lord 340, the son of a Roman prefect in what is now modern Germany. Once, when he was still an infant, a swarm of bees hovered around his lips, foretelling his eloquent preaching and his patronage of bees and beekeepers. While yet unbaptized, serving as a Roman official, Ambrose calmed a dispute over the succession of the See of Milan, charming the entire crowd with his speech. A child called out “Ambrose, Bishop!” and instantly the whole congregation took up the cry. Though Ambrose protested, the Emperor approved of the people’s choice, and over the course of one week Ambrose received the sacraments and each stage of Holy Orders, culminating in his consecration as Bishop of Milan on December 7th. As Bishop, Ambrose defended the faith to the point of chastising Emperors and other officials for their crimes, barring them from Communion until they did public penance. He wrote prodigiously on the faith, composed and encouraged the use of liturgical hymns, and his countless converts included St. Augustine, whom Ambrose treated almost like his own son. The “Honey-Tongued Doctor”, as he was known, died on April 4th, 397.


Traditional Roman Martyrology for December 7th

AT Milan, the consecration of St. Ambrose, bishop and doctor of the Church, who has ennobled the universal Church by his holiness and teaching.

At Alexandria, the birthday of blessed Agatho, soldier. In the persecution of Decius, as he was preventing some people from insulting the bodies of the martyrs, a sudden outcry was raised against him by all the populace, and being brought before the judge and persisting in the confession of Christ, he was condemned to capital punishment as a reward for his humanity.

At Antioch, the holy martyrs Polycarp and Theodore.

At Tuburbum, in Africa, during the persecution of the Vandals, under the Arian king Hunneric, St. Servus, martyr, who, being for a very long time beaten with rods, lifted up on high with pulleys and suddenly dropped on flint-stones with his whole weight, and rubbed over with sharp stones, obtained the palm of martyrdom.

At Teano, in Campania, St. Urban, bishop and confessor.

At Saintes, in France, St. Martin, abbot, at whose tomb God works frequent miracles.

In the diocese of Meaux, St. Fara, virgin.

℣. And elsewhere many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.

℟. Thanks be to God.

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