Saint Brigid Religious Education
100 Mayflower Street
West Hartford, CT 06110
day: August 28
Augustine was born in Roman N. Africa to a devout Catholic mother and a
pagan father on November 13, 354. He was a notoriously rebellious
Catholic teenager, and ran away from his mother. As a grown man he
became a brilliant and renowned teacher of public speaking and was
appointed by the emperor to teach in Milan, Italy. While there, he
happened to hear the preaching of the bishop of Milan,
who baptized him in 386.
ultimately renounced his secular career and became a monk. With the
objective of living a life of poverty and prayer, he sold his property
and gave the proceeds to the poor. Although he did not think of becoming
a priest, during a visit to Hippo, as he was praying in the church,
people suddenly gathered around him and persuaded the bishop of Hippo,
Valerius, to ordain Augustine. He was ordained in 391, and in Tagaste,
established a monastery, and preached against Manichaeism with great
success. When he was forty-two, he became bishop Hippo, where he was
bishop for thirty-four years.
During his years as
bishop, Augustine combated the Manichaean heresy, strongly affirming
free will and expounding on the problem of evil, he struggled against
the Donatist heresy that attacked the divine institution and hierchical
nature of the Church. In later years he would confront the Pelagian
heresy that denied the doctrine of original sin and the effects of
grace; and the heresy of Arianism, which denied that the Son is of the
same substance as the Father.
Augustine died August 28,
430 at the age of seventy-five. His perennial contribution to and
influence on Catholic doctrine and thought and on Christian belief and
piety is incalculable, and his many theological and philosophical works,
especially the Confessions and the City of God have continue to
captivate and inspire mankind for more than fifteen-hundred years.
Augustine of Hippo is
commonly recognized as the great teacher in the Western Church between
the New Testament and
St. Thomas Aquinas. He was one of
the most influential thinkers in the entire history of the Church.