December 7th is the day the Church remembers one of it’s finest -Bishop Ambrose. A gifted civil leader in northern Italy, Ambrose was selected to become the new Bishop of Milan in 374. He noted that he was not baptized so he could not become the new bishop. That obstacle was removed when he was baptized that same day. Within a week’s time of being baptized he was ordained a priest, and then consecrated a bishop.
Ambrose was instrumental in converting Augustine to Christianity. Augustine was an important church leader in difficult times both from within and outside of the Church. Augustine died in 430.
Fast forward about 1,000 years, a young scholar by the name of Martin Luther, became a monk at an Augustinian monastery and would become an important church leader as well. We Lutherans can trace our ancestry back to Bishop Ambrose.
Ambrose objected he was “not qualified” when others saw potential in him- but God and the good folks of Milan took care of those objections! God has been making use of “THE AMBROSE PLAN” to provide leadership in congregations of God’s Church for some time…in spite of our objections. How is God calling you?
Gracious God, we remember our common roots with the faithful who have gone before us, including Ambrose. We celebrate the reconciling work of Roman Catholic and Lutheran teachers and scholars engaged in ecumenical dialogues locally and around the world. May we follow your call to “…be strong, do not fear!” in building reconciliation with all our sisters and brothers in Christ. Amen
Rev. Roger C. Claxton
Interim Pastor- Bethlehem Lutheran (Red Oak) and Faith Lutheran (Griswold)