Hope for the Unity? Heresies and Heretics in St. Ambrose’s Letters


This article presents the results of the analysis of the correspondence of St. Ambrose, the Bishop of Milan, concerning heresies and heretics and the hope of their final reconciliation with the Church. The article consists of two essential parts, the first shows the definition and essence of heresies and heretics, including examples of heretics and how they act. The second part focuses on dealing with heretics and fighting for the unity of the Church. This section shows the ways in which this fight is taking place and the parties responsible for it: the bishops and the emperors. Reading the letters of St. Ambrose does not leave any illusions – the Bishop of Milan has gradually been losing the hope for ending such conflicts, above all with the Arians. Reasons for such an attitude are repeatedly presented in his letters – the conflict of the basilicas, the attitudes of the heretics, the weakness of orthodox believers and priests. It seems, however, that in spite of everything still smoulders in him spark of hope, because to the last letter of preserved cor­respondence he calls for return to the bosom of the Church and orthodoxy.


Ambrose of Milan; heresy; heretics; letters; unity; hope

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Published : 2018-12-16

Wysocki, M. (2018). Hope for the Unity? Heresies and Heretics in St. Ambrose’s Letters. Vox Patrum, 68, 327-340. https://doi.org/10.31743/vp.3360

Marcin Wysocki 
Katolicki Uniwersytet Lubelski Jana Pawła II  Poland

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