Our Mission

Our Mission

We the St. Ambrose Cathedral parish of the Diocese of Des Moines are a diverse community of the rich and poor, disadvantaged and hungry, young and elderly, visitors, and those seeking refuge.

We are a Eucharistic community of many cultures. We strive for unity in our diversity – expressing our love of God through prayer and worship, justice and service, the ministry of hospitality, and through catechesis, evangelization, and ecumenism.

We pursue this mission faithfully by following the example of Jesus Christ, the power of the Holy Spirit, and the gifts and talents of our faith community.

We invite you to be active in our faith community – as a visitor, a parishioner, or one who considers St. Ambrose their “second home” for worship.

Many Parts; One Body

Our Diversity and Unity

Our refugee ministry – active for 40 years – has helped form us into a parish family of many races, cultures and native countries.

We love to worship together in this diversity. We’re proud to be a “community of communities“ where prayer, learning and caring are nurtured within our ethnic communities as well as in parish life.  Story of Our People

Across generations

Nurturing our families and youth

We love to offer vibrant faith experiences to the children, teens and young adults among us.

We believe that family finances should not stand in the way of any young person eager to draw closer to God with their peers. Most of our young families are still establishing new homes in America, and our community loves to help them afford experiences like Catholic Youth Camp, National Catholic Youth Conference, and World Youth Day. Our Family Faith Formation programs on Sunday mornings are designed for parents as well as youth – with full-family faith experiences as well as classes. Volunteer in faith formation

130 years strong

Beautiful cathedral to share

We're glad to gather parishioners from across the metro, plus visitors year-round.

We’re proud to host important Diocesan liturgies. Many people come often for noontime weekday Masses or weekend liturgy – making this their “second home” for worship. We welcome visitors who include worship in their travels, and those who experience concerts or weddings in this magnificent space. We invite you to financially support this parish, to care for these buildings and our people.

St. Ambrose icon
Prayer of St. Ambrose

Lord, teach me to see you, and reveal yourself to me when I see you.
For I cannot seek you unless you first teach me, nor find you unless you first reveal yourself to me.
Let me see you in longing, and long for you in seeking.
Let me find you in love and love you in finding.

Why we love St. Ambrose

St. Ambrose was born around the year 340 A.D. in Southern Gaul of noble parents. As a youth, he studied classics, various philosophers, and Greek. He soon made a name for himself as public speaker and poet.

While Ambrose was still in his late twenties, he was made governor and served the people justly and kindly.

In the year 374 A.D., the bishop of Milan died. There was a major dispute about who should take his place. To keep the dispute from becoming an uprising, Ambrose intervened – and he so impressed the people with a speech that he was chosen to be bishop even though he was only a catechumen! Ambrose did all he could to avoid becoming bishop, but he was unsuccessful. Ambrose was ordained bishop on December 7, 374 A.D. at the age of 34.

The first action of St. Ambrose when he took office was to give away all his possessions so he could totally commit his life to his flock.

As bishop, Ambrose eagerly used his talent of public speaking to preach the faith. He continually instructed the people in the practice of virtue. Ambrose wrote many works in defense of the Catholic Faith, During his lifetime, Ambrose called several councils and worked tirelessly against the Arian heresy. He died around the year 397 A.D.

As a community, we try to echo St. Ambrose’s generosity and encouragement, his eagerness to share our faith, and his loving commitment to God and others.

St. Ambrose, pray for us!

Where to find us

St. Ambrose Cathedral

607 High St, Des Moines, IA 50309

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