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Saint Ambrose
Birth: c. 340
Death: Apr. 4, 397

Archbishop of Milan, Roman Catholic Saint, Patron Saint of Milan. He is remembered as one of the most influential ecclesiastical leaders of the 4th century A.D. and was one of the four original Doctors of the Church. He is also credited with introducing hymnology from the Eastern Church into the West. Born Aurelius Ambrosius around 340 A.D. into a Roman Christian family at Trier, in present-day Germany, his father was the praetorian perfect of Gaul and his mother was an intellectual and pious woman. After his father's early death, he went to Rome and studied literature, law, and rhetoric, with the intention of following in his father's career. Around 372 A.D. he became consular prefect (or governor) of Liguria and Emilia, Italy, whose headquarters was at Milan. In 374 A.D. he became the Bishop of Milan, replacing Auxentius, an Arian (a Christian sect whose concept of Christ is that the Son of God did not always exist, but was created by and distinct from God the Father), who had died. A Catholic in belief (supporter of the Nicene Creed), he had never been baptized or trained in theology and the Arian faction of the Church was displeased with his selection as the new Bishop. He at first refused the office but then went into hiding for safety. A week later he was revealed by his host, baptized, ordained, and consecrated as the Archbishop of Milan with the support of Western Roman Emperor Gratian. He adopted an ascetic lifestyle, giving his money to the poor and donating all of his land, making only a provision for his sister, Marcellina (who later became a nun), and committed the care of his family to his brother. According to legend, he immediately and forcefully stopped Arianism in Milan. He built several churches around Milan that were dedicated with anti-Arian language. He studied theology, and with his knowledge of the Greek language, he studied the Old Testament of the Bible as well as Greek authors like Philo, Origen, and Athanasius. He applied this knowledge as a preacher, focusing on his literal interpretation of the Old Testament. He sought to theologically refute the "heretical" position of the Arians, who appealed to Emperor Gratian to call a general council from all parts of the empire. After appealing to Gratian to convene a council of only the Western bishops to resolve the issue, a synod of 32 bishops met at Aquileia, Italy in 381 A.D. and after a vote, the Arian bishops Palladius of Ratiaria and Secundianus of Singidunum were deposed from the episcopal office. About five years later he again encountered formidable opposition when the new Western Roman Emperor Valentinian II and his mother Justina, along with a considerable number of clergy and laity (especially the military) professed Arianism. They demanded a church in Milan for the Arians. He refused, and was called to Rome to answer to the council. His eloquent defense of traditional Church reportedly amazed the ministers of Emperor Vanetinian and he was allowed to leave without surrendering any of his churches. When Theodosius I regained the Western Roman empire in 392 A.D. Ambrose threatened to excommunicate him for the massacre of 7,000 people at Thessalonica in 390 A.D., after rioters murdered the Roman governor there. He convinced Theodosius to repent, and after several months of penance, Theodosius was readmitted to partake of the Holy Eucharist. He died in Milan on April 4, 397 A.D. and his remains are contained in a glass coffin, flanked by the remains of martyred Saints Gervasius and Protasius, whose bodies he "miraculously" found under the pavement of the Saint'Ambrogio Church. He was declared a saint to the bishop by those who knew him best and were familiar with his life and merits before the official canonization process was instituted in the 12th century. (bio by: William Bjornstad) 

Cause of death: Natural causes
Basilica of Sant'Ambrogio
Cittą Metropolitana di Milano
Lombardia, Italy
Plot: In Basilica's crypt, open to public on Ambrose's feast day
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Record added: Jul 30, 1999
Find A Grave Memorial# 6023
Saint Ambrose
Added by: REBELD
Saint Ambrose
Added by: REBELD
Saint Ambrose
Added by: Steven Baldwin
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