Taking A Look at Saints: St. Ambrose & More

When it comes to a saint, who first comes to your mind? Is it St. Patrick? Is it a specific Pope? How about the saint who is actually connected to the Loch Ness Monster? In this article, you will find a collection of trivia pertaining to saints throughout history.

Did you know that the saying “When in Rome, do as the Romans do” was first cited by St. Ambrose. In 387 AD, when St. Augustine arrived in Mediolanum (which is now known as modern-day Milan), he saw that the Church in Milan did not fast on Saturday as the Church in Rome did. He brought his concerns to Ambrose, who stated, “When I am at Rome, I fast on a Saturday; when I am at Milan, I do not. Follow the custom of the Church where you are.” Over time, the comment underwent a few changes and became “When they are in Rome, they do there as they see done” , the handiwork of Robert Burton who printed it in his Anatomy of Melancholy. Today, this would become the form we most identify with.

Simeon Stylites was a Syrian saint hailing from the 5th century. He spent the last 30 years of his life sitting on top of a pillar that measured 70 feet into the air.

When taking a look at the Cuban Santeria religion of voodoo , you will find that it is associated with the veneration of Roman Catholic saints , which serves as its foundation. In Santeria, the saints are syncretised with Yoruban deities and become equally worshipped throughout the churches. The Santeria religious festivities include deities (called orishas), even though the Roman Catholic Church has condemned this practice. 

Pope Saint Agatho (born around 577) was a pope from 678 to 681. In the beginning, Agatho was a Greek born in Sicily to parents that were wealthy and devout. After they passed away, he is believed to have given away his entire inheritance and retired to a monastery located in Palermo. His beliefs developed as a result of a letter that St. Gregory the Great wrote to the abbot of St. Hermes in Palermon (a Benedictine Monastery). In his letter, an “Agatho” was mentioned, as Gregory stated that the about could receive Agatho into his monastery if Agatho’s wife was willing to enter a convent. Some believe that Pope Agatho is this person mentioned in the letter, it would mean that the man was well over 100 years old at the time.

Some people also believe that St. Patrick was the first Christian missionary sent to the Irish, yet he was not. In 431, Pope Celestine I sent a deacon named Palladius to Ireland, which was a couple of years before St. Patrick ever returned to Ireland. Prosper of Aquitaine cited this information.

During the Middle Ages, it was customary for ceremonial events to make use of the skulls of saints as drinking cups.

Did you know that arms dealers have their own patron saint? It is St. Adrian Nicomedia who watches over these individuals.