Gonzalez, Justo L. The Story of Christianity: The Early Church to the Reformation. Revised and Updated ed. Vol. 1. New York: HarperCollins, 2010. Kindle Electronic Edition.
Ch. 23, “Jerome” Loc. 4196-4302.
Gonzalez introduces us to Jerome as a very “intriguing” character. “He is outstanding, not for his sanctity, like Anthony, nor for his keen theological insight, like Athanasius, nor for his firmness before the authorities, like Ambrose, nor even for his preaching, like Chrysostom, but rather for his titanic and endless struggle with the world and with himself” (Gonzalez 2010, Loc. 4200). Jerome was painstaking personally and expected no less of others (Gonzalez 2010, Loc. 4204). Though he was born in 348, later than many of the fourth century leaders, he rose to the top rank quickly (Gonzalez 2010, Loc. 4208). Because of struggles with his own desires Jerome pursued a very ascetic life, even refusing to bathe because he had been washed by Christ (Gonzalez 2010, Loc. 4213). He left his life of asceticism prior to 381, being ordained a presbyter in Antioch, spending time in Constantinople, then Rome (Gonzalez 2010, Loc. 4222), where Bishop Damasus of Rome encouraged him to make a new Latin translation of the Bible. After 384 Jerome left Rome for Jerusalem, with a side trip for research in Egypt (Gonzalez 2010, Loc. 4242). He and the two ladies who accompanied him from Rome founded two monastic houses in Jerusalem and he pursued his translation work (Gonzalez 2010, Loc. 4249). Gonzalez details Augustine’s objections to Jerome’s work (Gonzalez 2010, Loc. 4264), as Augustine considered the Septuagint and the other translations adequate. Though Jerome and Augustine had a serious disagreement, Jerome later came to respect Augustine’s work (Gonzalez 2010, Loc. 4286).