The great Augustine: son, sinner, saint
On Thursday, 11 November , the Holy Father received the
relics of St. Augustine (354-430), Doctor of the Church, in his Private
Chapel. This marks the first time in history that the Saint's relics
have been brought to Rome for veneration, and the occasion was the
1650th anniversary of his birth.
O great Augustine, our father and teacher,
who knows the shining paths of God
and also the crooked paths of men,
we admire the marvels that divine Grace
has worked in you,
making you a passionate witness
to truth and goodness
at the service of your neighbour.
At the start of a new millennium marked by
the Cross of Christ,
teach us to read history
in the light of divine Providence,
which guides events to the
final encounter with the Father.
Guide us towards goals of peace,
kindling in our hearts
your own desire for the values
upon which we,
with the strength that comes from God,
can build the "city of Man".
May the profound teaching that you drew,
with loving and patient study,
from the ever-living sources of Scripture
enlighten all who are tempted today
by alienating mirages.
May you obtain for them the courage
to set out on the way
towards that "inner man" in whom the One,
who alone can restore peace
to our restless hearts, awaits.
So many of our contemporaries seem to have
lost the hope of reaching,
amidst the many conflicting ideologies,
the truth that they continue to yearn for
in depths of their hearts.
Teach them never to give up their quest
in the certainty that,
in the end, their efforts will be rewarded
by the fulfilling encounter
with that, supreme Truth, who is the Source
of every created truth.
Lastly, O St Augustine,
communicate to us too a spark
of that burning love for the Church,
the Catholic mother of the Saints,
which sustained and gave life
to the efforts of your own long ministry.
Enable us, as we walk together under
the guidance of our legitimate Pastors,
to reach the glory of the heavenly Homeland
where, with all the Blesseds,
we can join in singing
the new and eternal Alleluia.