Thursday, August 28, 2008

The great Doctor of the Church

Today is a very special feast in the Church and also for our religious community. Our Rule - our way of life - is based on the Rule of St. Augustine and today is his feast day. Some communities live by the rule of St. Francis or St. Benedict or the like. Our Rule - that which governs the way we live our religious life - is patterned on the Rule that St. Augustine wrote for his community in the fourth century. St. Augustine placed a great emphasis on community life and on ongoing spiritual conversion.

To read a biography of this great saint, click on the following links: or

St. Augustine's most famous work was his "Confessions" which is the beautiful, poetic account of his search for God and his ultimate conversion. The most famous passage from the "Confessions" follows. Try reading it slowly, meditatively, and think of how it applies to your own personal life:

"Late have I loved you, O Beauty ever ancient, ever new, late have I loved you! You were within me, but I was outside, and it was there that I searched for you. In my unloveliness I plunged into the lovely things which you created. You were with me, but I was not with you. Created things kept me from you; yet if they had not been in you they would not have been at all. You called, you shouted, and you broke through my deafness. You flashed, you shone, and you dispelled my blindness. You breathed your fragrance on me; I drew in breath and now I pant for you. I have tasted you, now I hunger and thirst for more. You touched me, and I burned for your peace."

One of our community's favorite prayers was written by St. Augustine:

"Lord, my God, my only hope, hear me! Let me never grow weary of seeking you; let me always zealously seek your face! Give me the strength to seek you, for you have already enabled me to find you and have given me hope of finding you ever more fully. My strength and my weakness lie before you: preserve the one, heal the other. My knowledge and my ignorance lie before you: where you have opened to me, let me enter; where you have closed to me, open when I knock. More and more let me remember you, understand you, love you until you have wholly remade me. Amen." (The Trinity, 15, 51)
St. Augustine pray for us!

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