So. . .
In PDF format:
We only have 4 hymns that we know conclusively come from the pen of St. Ambrose, because the writings of his son St. Augustine attest to them by name. Many others bear his name but are not definitely Ambrosian in authorship.
However, I like to think that the beautiful tribute to an early virgin martyr, Agnes Beatae Virginis, usually attributed to St. Ambrose, is his. It has a certain clarity and declarative vigor that sounds like him. Here is my translation.
The blessed virgin Agnes flies
back to her home above the skies.
With love she gave her blood on earth
to gain a new celestial birth.
Mature enough to give her life,
though still too young to be a wife,
what joy she shows when death appears
that one would think: her bridegroom nears!
Her captors lead her to the fire
but she refuses their desire,
“For it is not such smold’ring brands
Christ’s virgins take into their hands.”
“This flaming fire of pagan rite
extinguishes all faith and light.
Then stab me here, so that the flood
may overcome this hearth in blood.”
Courageous underneath the blows,
her death a further witness shows,
for as she falls she bends her knee
and wraps her robes in modesty.
O Virgin-born, all praises be
to You throughout eternity.
and unto everlasting days
to Father and the Spirit, praise.
Last week I was invited to an Edmonton Oilers game here in their home city. It is quite the spectacle, and it didn’t take long for the fans to get into the experience. We were invited to make lots of noise, but, in truth, fans don’t need that invitation. We certainly didn’t need it that night. Throughout the game we shouted out our directions to the team: “Shoot! Pass! Get it into the end zone! Get it out!” Etc. There might have been a few other epithets thrown around, but I won’t mention those here.
‘And yet, when the Son of man returns will he find faith on earth?’ (Lk. 18:8). ⧾
Last Sunday, the anniversary of the last apparition of Our Lady at Fatima in Portugal, in our meditation we dwelt on some of the miraculous events associated with the miracle of the sun and the prophecies of Our Lady, some of which were fulfilled not long afterwards; namely the start of a another and more destructive war, the spread of communism and the annihilation of nations. Understood as political atheism we can see how communism has caused and continues to cause much distress and