Feast of St. Augustine of Hippo

St. Augustine of Hippo, Feast of

August 28
St. Augustine's career as a Christian got off to a slow start. The son of a pagan father and a Christian mother, he spent most of his youth in dissipation and promiscuity. He was 32 years old when he converted to Christianity in 386 after undergoing conflicts within himself on how he was living and what he believed; hearing St. Ambrose preach was said to have influenced him as well. A few years later he became bishop of Hippo in North Africa. For the next 40 years he was a teacher, writer, preacher, and theologian who exerted a profound influence on the development of Christian doctrine. He is best known for his spiritual autobiography, the Confessions, which detail the excesses of his youth, his career as a teacher of rhetoric, his years as a believer in Manicheism and Platonism, and his belated conversion to Christianity. It is primarily for his writings that he is known as the patron saint of theologians and scholars and one of the "Four Latin Fathers" of the Christian Church.
St. Augustine also typifies the Christian who has been converted slowly, as exemplified by his well-known prayer, "O God, make me pure—but not yet." When a company of Spanish soldiers landed on the coast of Florida on St. Augustine's Day in 1565, they named the U.S.'s oldest European community after him.
SOURCES:
AmerBkDays-2000, p. 614
AnnivHol-2000, p. 143
DaysCustFaith-1957, p. 221
DictWrldRel-1989, p. 77
EncyRel-1987, vol. 1, p. 520
OxYear-1999, p. 348
SaintFestCh-1904, p. 384
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