Art, the Bible & the Big Apple

St. Monica (331-387) was the mother of St. Augustine of Hippo (354-430), a Church Father whose writings were formative to early Christian doctrine and who described his mother’s  saintliness in his works.  The wife of an abusive, alcoholic pagan named Patricius, Monica fervently prayed for the conversion of her husband (which occurred on his deathbed) and her son, who at the time was leading a wild and promiscuous life.  Her devotion on behalf of her family made Monica the patron saint of housewives and mothers, an example of perseverance as well as great sorrow.

How to Know Her: Monica is often pictured with her son, Augustine of Hippo. She is usually portrayed as an elderly, modestly dressed woman.  When shown on her own, Monica may be recognized by her symbolic attribute, tears.

Saint in the City: Though works depicting  St. Monica are rare in New York City…

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