About Saint Augustine
Saint Augustine is also referred to as Augustine of Hippo. He is also known as the Doctor of the Church, and his feast day is August 28. He was born in the fourth century in (what is now known as) Algeria. If you are a teacher, St. Augustine is your patron saint. Saint Augustine was very inspirational in the world of education, and teaching styles.
Like St. Paul, Augustine was full of energy. Once his energy was focused on telling the story of God and converting others to the Catholic faith, he became a tireless inspiration for those around him. Augustine became a soldier for Christ. But it wasn’t always that way.
Augustine had some very wild years growing up. In fact, one of the sayings most widely attributed to Augustine is "Grant me chastity and continence, but not yet..." which he uttered in his early 30s.
Eventually he decided to convert and become a Catholic. One of the stories associated with Augustine's conversion was this: while Augustine was in his garden in Milan, he told others he heard the voice of a child telling him to "take up and read." Augustine grabbed the closest book and began to read -- it turned out to be St. Paul's Letter to the Romans.
Augustine wrote of his wild years and his eventual conversion to becoming Catholic in his book "Confessions." Confessions is an important literary work. In fact, Augustine wrote several famous books and is widely acclaimed as a prolific writer and theologian. The book “Confessions” outlines the experiences he had growing up. It details the wild years, but the book also explores the guilt, shame and regret of some of his actions and decisions. The book also goes into great detail about his outlook on morality and God. This is an important theological work as well, because Augustine explores "God's intentions" versus the "impact of peers and society" on man -- and the decisions people actually make...good and bad.
After Augustine's conversion to Catholicism, he moved from Milan back to Northern Africa, where he was born. But along the way, his son -- and also his mother Monica, a strong influence in his life, both passed away. Augustine was now alone in the world -- alone with his thoughts.
Augustine became a student of God. He worked hard to convert people in his community to the Catholic way of life, often giving stirring speeches to large crowds. Within a few years of becoming a priest, Augustine was elevated to the role of Bishop. Augustine remained a bishop until his death in 430.
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