Monica of Hippo – Saint

Saint Monica (Mother of a No-Good Son)
Northern Africa (AD 331–AD 387)
Patron: abused or neglected wives, mothers of wayward children
Feast day: August 27

Saint Monica was the quintessence of patience. She was the wife of an abusive, cheating man, Patricius, who had a short fuse and a violent temper, in addition to a wandering eye. When he wasn’t arguing with Monica, he was cheating on her. Monica also had to endure her horrible mother-in-law who lived with them — a stereotypical busybody who thrived on criticizing her son’s wife. Making matters worse was Monica’s lazy, irresponsible, reckless, and amoral son, Augustine.

The eldest of three children, Augustine eventually moved in with his girlfriend without being married to her. Despite their problems, Monica loved her family very much and wanted nothing less than their conversion to Christianity and lives of holiness and moral living. After almost 30 years of perseverance and prayer, Monica saw her dreams realized: Augustine and his illegitimate son were baptized.

She followed Augustine when he left northern Africa for Rome, foiling an attempt he made to lose her by altering his route and going to Milan instead. In Milan, Augustine met Saint Ambrose, who was the one to finally baptize Augustine and his son.

Last updated: March 21, 2013 at 21:38 pm

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