Saint Days: Augustine, Bishop and Teacher
St. Augustine (354-430) was born in Roman Africa. His mother was named Monica, a strong Christian. He was educated with the pagan classics and practiced the Manichaean religion and lived a severely hedonistic lifestyle. His mother always prayed for him while he strayed from the faith.
Eventually, he became a skeptic before being drawn to Christianity by his mother's example, a good friend, and his study of Neoplatonism. He was eventually converted to Christianity by Ambrose of Milan, a Bishop. He was later ordained as a priest, became a well-known preacher, and eventually the Bishop of Hippo until he died of illness in 430.
Augustine was a brilliant thinker who greatly enriched the life of the Church:
A person who is a good and true Christian should realize that truth belongs to his Lord, wherever it is found, gathering and acknowledging it even in pagan literature, but rejecting superstitious vanities and deploring and avoiding those who 'though they knew God did not glorify Him as God or give thanks but became enfeebled in their own thoughts and plunged their senseless minds into darkness. Claiming to be wise they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for the image of corruptible mortals and animals and reptiles' [Romans 1:21-23]. -On Christian Teaching
Let us remember Augustine in our prayers today:
Almighty God, you gave to your servant Augustine special gifts of grace to understand and teach the truth as it is in Christ Jesus: Grant that by this teaching we may know you, the one true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.