Prayers, Quips and Quotes: St. Augustine, Feast Day August 28




 

St. Augustine of Hippo by Sandro Botticelli Public Domain Image
St. Augustine of Hippo
by Sandro Botticelli
Public Domain Image

The feast day of St. Augustine is celebrated on August 28th. St. Augustine is the patron saint of brewers.

After the death of his father at the age of seventeen, St. Augustine left the church and led a loose life. He soon had both a mistress and a son. His mother St. Monica prayed for him for seventeen years before he returned to the faith.
Augustine began his search for faith by joining a group called the Manichees. Manichaeism teaches there are two gods at war with each other; good and evil. It also teaches that all matter is evil. He was hesitant to fully practice his faith due to physical desires. He is known for his statement “O God, give me chastity, but not yet.”

 

Eventually, Augustine heard the preaching of St. Ambrose, which greatly influenced him. He began to study the bible. One day, after experiencing great remorse for his sins, Augustine heard a child singing, “Take up and read!” He opened his bible to the letters of St. Paul where he read “put away all impurity and live in imitation of Jesus.” From then on Augustine practiced his faith with zeal. He was baptized by St. Ambrose, ordained a priest and eventually became a bishop. He was also a famous writer. His book “Confessions” is considered a classic. After his death in 430 he was proclaimed a Doctor of the Church.

The following poem was written by St. Augustine.

Late have I loved you, Beauty so ancient and so new, late have I loved you!       Lo, you were within, but I outside, seeking there for you,
and upon the shapely things you have made I rushed headlong – I, misshapen.
You were with me, but I was not with you. They held me back far from you,
those things which would have no being, were they not in you.

You called, shouted, broke through my deafness;
you flared, blazed, banished my blindness;
you lavished your fragrance, I gasped; and now I pant for you;
I tasted you, and now I hunger and thirst;
you touched me, and I burned for your peace.

 

August is the Month of the Immaculate Heart of Mary

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