Saint Monica, patron saint of Mothers, Alcoholics, Married Women, and Conversion. August 27th is her feast day, the day before the feast of St. Augustine. Most things that are widely known about her come from St. Augustine’s Confessions, but I was able to research the inside scoop and dig up some juicy nuggets. Like, did you know St. Monica was a helicopter parent? Here’s seven more unknown facts.
1. Monica had an arranged marriage
Though her family was Christian, Monica’s parents agreed to give in her marriage to Patricius, a pagan who lived in her hometown. Patricius was promiscuous and known to have a temper, but respected Monica and her faith.
2. Monica was, basically, a living saint
Through her constant prayers and pious example, Monica was able to stay humble and patient with her husband and cranky mother-in-law, who both ended up converting to Christianity and being baptized before their deaths.
3. Monica had how many kids?!
It is unknown how many children she birthed, but only three of them survived infancy. The oldest, and most well known, was Augustine.
4. Monica was a helicopter parent
Upon hearing that Augustine wanted to go to Rome, she made plans to follow him. When he tricked her and left one night, she traveled alone to Rome and then to Milan to find him.
5. Monica had a little bit of an ego
In Milan, St. Monica met with St. Ambrose as her spiritual director, and humbly submitted to his suggestions no matter how hard they pressed her conscience. She reformed some of her habits and became a leader of the devout women in Milan.
6. Monica was born in Africa
Monica was born in 330 in Tagaste, North Africa.
7. By the end, Monica looked forward to her death
After Augustine’s conversion and baptism, Monica is quoted as saying: “Son, nothing in this world now affords me delight. I do not know what there is now left for me to do or why I am still here, all my hopes in this world being now fulfilled.” After Augustine left for Africa, Monica fell severely ill for nine days before her death.