A Great Sinner, A Great Saint

St. Augustine is loved, revered and quoted by Catholics and Protestants alike. There are some quotes that are shared by both traditions, but then there are others that seem to be absent among Protestants. After I became Catholic I also learned that I needed to change the pronunciation of his name, moving the accent from the first “u” to the second “u” of his name.

Today is St. Augustine’s feast day. He is known as one of the greatest sinners that became one of the greatest saints. His impact on the Church and Western civilization is immeasurable.

In honor of our saint I want to share some of the quotes that I discovered while on my journey into the Catholic Church.

The first quote I came across was “A sure mark of a heretical and schismatic community is that it names itself by a man or an idea rather than by the simple title ‘Catholic’.” (February 13, 2014)

“My heart is restless until it finds its rest in Thee.” (February 21, 2014)

“Trust in God’s grace for your past, His love for the present, and His providence for the future.” (March 10, 2014)

From a sermon by Saint Augustine, bishop–
“If you have risen with Christ, set your hearts on the things that are above where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God; seek the things that are above, not the things that are on earth. ‘For just as he remained with us even after his ascension, so we too are already in heaven with him, even though what is promised us has not yet been fulfilled in our bodies.'” (May 29, 2014)

“Let us always desire the happy life from the Lord God and always pray for it. But for this very reason we turn our mind to the task of prayer at appointed hours, since that desire grows lukewarm, so to speak, from our involvement in other concerns and occupations. We remind ourselves through the words of prayer to focus our attention on the object of our desires; otherwise, the desire that began to grow lukewarm may grow chill altogether and may be totally extinguished unless it is repeatedly stirred into flame.” (October 20, 2014)

“We become earthly if we love the earth, but heavenly if we love heaven. Nay more, if we love God, we actually, by participation, become godlike.” (June 3, 2015)

“Your Lord is seated at the Father’s right in heaven. How then is the bread His Body? And the chalice, or rather its content, how is it His Blood? These elements are called Sacraments, because in them one thing is perceived by the sense and another thing by the mind. What is seen has a bodily appearance, what the mind perceives produces spiritual fruit. You hear the words, ‘The Body of Christ’, and you answer ‘Amen.'” (December 4, 2015)

And from this morning’s Office of Readings: “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.”

St. Augustine, pray for us!

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