My son Ambrose Hill is named after my Grandad Ambrose Chiaroni who was named after his uncle and great-uncle Ambrose, or Ambrogio, in Italian.
Sant’Ambrogio is the patron saint of Milan and La Festa Di Sant’Ambrogio is celebrated with a Public Holiday on December 7. So Milan was the first stop on our family adventure to Italy so we could visit La Basilica of Sant’Ambrogio on La Festa Di Sant’Ambrogio!
And we did. The Basilica isn’t flashy on the outside but is very beautiful on the inside. Perhaps fitting as when Ambrose became bishop, he donated all of his land and gave his money to the poor.
Ambrose’s body remains in the church along with the bodies of Saints Gervase and Protase and is in full view for all to see. Pretty freaky but also very cool.
Apparently, Ambrose is credited with advising Augustine of Hippo to follow local liturgical customs.
When I am in Rome, I fast on a Saturday; when I am at Milan, I do not. Follow the custom of the church where you are.
This advice has been translated in English as the saying “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.” And we are! We’re taking our espresso short and standing up. And we’ve opted for a Fiat rather than an Audi to drive around Sicily!
Visiting this church on this day was very special to us. It was the perfect start to our family adventure.