Today the Church celebrates the feast of St. Augustine. I want to go outside of our regular format today and talk about this great saint. By the way, we see much of our first reading played out in the life of St. Augustine. Read it and see if you agree.
Augustine was a man of the world. He was given immense gifts by God. He was a brilliant thinker and a skilled orator. From an early age he knew that he wanted to practice law and use his oratory skills in front of the court. After leaving home, he rose rapidly in the world and made a name for himself. But he wanted nothing to do with religion. His mother, Monica (whose feast we celebrated yesterday), prayed relentlessly for the conversion of her son. Eventually, God answered her prayers. Augustine became a bishop and one of the greatest minds in the history of the Church. From great sinner to great saint – something we should all aspire to.
I’ll end today’s reflection with some sound advice from St. Augustine. From Sermon 265, 3-4: My brothers and sisters, believe firmly what you believe – that Christ will return. What does it matter when? Prepare yourself for His coming. Live as though He were coming today, and you will not fear His coming.
Father, we thank you for the witness of St. Augustine. May we sinners follow in his footsteps to sainthood. Amen.