Feast – December 7
The son of a Roman official in Gaul, Ambrose was practicing law in Rome when the emperor appointed him governor of the province whose capital was Milan. When that church see became vacant, Ambrose was chosen bishop by acclamation. A catechumen like many of his people, Ambrose was baptized, ordained and consecrated bishop on the same day, Dec. 7, 374. He battled paganism and the Arian heresy, publicly challenged rulers in the Western and Eastern empires, championed hymns as a form of praise, wrote theological treatises and was beloved by his people for his generosity and accessibility. He also baptized St. Augustine of Hippo. One of the four doctors of the Latin church, Ambrose is the patron of bees, stonemasons and catechumens.