Icon of Saint Ambrose – S103

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Saint Ambrose was the son of the pagan imperial governor of Gaul and Spain and a devout Christian woman.  He became governor of the Milan region in Italy upon his father’s death.  As yet unbaptized, he was called upon to maintain order when a dispute arose between the Orthodox Christians and Arian heretics over the election of a new bishop.  When Ambrose entered the church, an infant at his mother’s breast called out, “Ambrose for bishop!” which was taken by all as a God-inspired choice.  He was baptized and brought through all of the clerical ranks to bishop in one week.

The Lord made this chosen vessel a pillar of the faith by many mighty works?including healings of all kinds, both physical and spiritual, raising the dead, and prophesies?yet he remained humble even before the most menial peasant.  In the face of despotism he remained fearless and unyielding even towards emperors or other bishops who compromised Orthodox faith and practice, and as a result earned the great respect and admiration of all.  He wrote many instructive and devotional books which are legacies  for us today.  He died peacefully at the daybreak of Pascha in 397.

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