Who was Saint Ansgar?
St. Ansgar is the patron saint of Denmark, Germany and Iceland. He was born "Oscar" of
a noble family in northern France in the days of Charlemagne, 801. He became a monk at
a young age and was well-educated. In those days, the Vikings were the scourge of
Northern Europe and all were terrified of them. They were pagans. Ansgar felt the
call of God to go and preach the Good News to these Vikings.
He was discouraged by his peers. They said to him that such a venture was dangerous
and that he could lose his life. Nevertheless, he maintained his vision and trusted in
the assurance of God. Equipped with tents and books, he and another monk set out in
826 and founded a school in Denmark.
It was tough. He faced many obstacles, dangers and setbacks. He was expelled a number
of times, but always went back. While sharing the word to the Danes, they were
actively attacking Christian cities; they raided Hamburg in 845.
Still, he planted the seed of the Gospel and it grew. He obtained permission from the
two warring kings during the Danish Civil War to build a church. Christianity was
recognized as a "tolerated religion. He also visited Sweden and it is recorded that in
854, a Swedish raiding party stopped and prayed for God's help in their endeavor.
Ansgar died in 865. His over 40 years of tireless effort helped bring the Christian
faith to all of Scandinavia and Northern Germany.
Yet he was just a simple monk, who answered God's call. What if he had said, "No, God.
I cannot. I do not have the means. I am only a simple monk."? Read the pastor's
sermon from the feast day of St. Ansgar, on the descructive power of these words, "I am
Find Out More about Saint Ansgar
The Wikipedia Article: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ansgar.
Another Article: nobility.org/2013/01/31/st-anschar.
A Short Biography of St. Ansgar from our own website (2002)