Late Have I Loved Thee

Saint of the Day:  Augustine of Hippo, “Doctor of Grace”

born in present-day Algeria in 354, d. 430

sinner turned saint; before his conversion, kept a mistress, with whom he had a son; he prayed “Oh, Master, make me chaste and celibate, but not yet!; a master of rhetoric; converted at age 33, became a priest at 36, chosen to be bishop at 41; accepted by most scholars as one of the most important figures in the Western Church; he wrote 5 million words about scripture and theology and was recognized as a doctor of the church in 1298; called the “doctor of grace” for his work against the Pelagians, who denied the need of grace for salvation

patron of printers, brewers, theologians

What are we doing? Unlearned people are taking heaven by force, while we, with all our knowledge, are so cowardly that we keep rolling around in the mud of our sins. — Augustine to his friend Alipius

Pope Benedict XVI’s General Audiences on Saint Augustine

(some) Prayers of Saint Augustine

Breathe in me O Holy Spirit, that my thoughts may all be holy;
Act in me O Holy Spirit, that my work, too, may be holy;
Draw my heart O Holy Spirit, that I love but what is holy;
Strengthen me O Holy Spirit, to defend all that is holy;
Guard me, then, O Holy Spirit, that I always may be holy. Amen.

(some) Writings of Saint Augustine

Too late loved I Thee, O Thou Beauty of ancient days, yet ever new! too late I loved Thee! And behold, Thou wert within, and I abroad, and there I searched for Thee; deformed I, plunging amid those fair forms which Thou hadst made. Thou wert with me, but I was not with Thee. Things held me far from Thee, which, unless they were in Thee, were not at all. Thou calledst, and shoutedst, and burstest my deafness. Thou flashedst, shonest, and scatteredst my blindness. Thou breathedst odours, and I drew in breath and panted for Thee. I tasted, and hunger and thirst. Thou touchedst me, and I burned for Thy peace.
— Augustine, Confessions Book X, Chapter 27

You have made us for yourself, and our heart is restless until it rests in you. — Augustine, Confessions, Book I, Chapter 1

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