28th August Saint Augustine

St. Augustine, bishop of Hippo is one of the Latin Fathers of the Church and perhaps the most significant Christian thinker after St. Paul. Augustine is remarkable for what he did and extraordinary for what he wrote. In Roman Catholicism he is formally recognized as a doctor of the church. He is the patron of brewers because of his conversion from a former life which included parties, entertainment, and worldly ambitions. His complete turnaround and conversion has been an inspiration to many who struggle with a particular vice or habit they long to break.

This famous son of St. Monica spent many years of his life in wicked living and in false beliefs. Though he was one of the most intelligent men who ever lived and though he had been brought up a Christian, his sins of impurity and his pride darkened his mind so much, that he could not see or understand the Divine Truth anymore. Through the prayers of his holy mother and the marvelous preaching of St. Ambrose, Augustine finally became convinced that Christianity was the one true religion. Yet he did not become a Christian then, because he thought he could never live a pure life. One day, however, he heard about two men who had suddenly been converted on reading the life of St. Antony, and he felt terrible ashamed of himself. “What are we doing?” he cried to his friend Alipius. “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!” Full of bitter sorrow, Augustine flung himself out into the garden and cried out to God. Just then he heard a child singing, “Take up and read!” Thinking that God intended him to hear those words, he picked up the book of the Letters of St. Paul. St. Paul says to put away all impurity and to live in imitation of Jesus. That did it! From then on, Augustine began a new life. “Too late have I loved You!” he once cried to God, but with his holy life he certainly made up for the sins he committed before his conversion. Augustine is the patron saint of brewers, printers and theologians.

Prayer to Saint Augustine of Hippo

We humbly supplicate and beseech thee, O thrice-blessed Augustine, that thou wouldst be mindful of us poor sinners this day, daily, and at the hour of our death, that by thy merits and prayers we may be delivered from all evils, of soul as well as body, and daily increase in virtue and good works; obtain for us that we may know our God and know ourselves, that in His mercy He may cause us to love Him above all things in life and death; impart to us, we beseech thee, some share of that love with which thou so ardently glow, that our hearts being all inflamed with this divine love, happily departing out of this mortal pilgrimage, we may deserve to praise with thee the loving heart of Jesus for a never-ending eternity.

Prayer to the Holy Spirit

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.

Prayer for the Indwelling of the Holy Spirit:

Holy Spirit, powerful Consoler, sacred Bond of the Father and the Son, Hope of the afflicted, descend into my heart and establish in it your loving dominion. Enkindle in my tepid soul the fire of your Love so that I may be wholly subject to you. We believe that when you dwell in us, you also prepare a dwelling for the Father and the Son. Deign, therefore, to come to me, Consoler of abandoned souls, and Protector of the needy. Help the afflicted, strengthen the weak, and support the wavering. Come and purify me. Let no evil desire take possession of me. You love the humble and resist the proud. Come to me, glory of the living, and hope of the dying. Lead me by your grace that I may always be pleasing to you. Amen.

Prayer to Know God:

Eternal God, who are the light of the minds that know you, the joy of the hearts that love you, and the strength of the wills that serve you; grant us so to know you that we may truly love you, and so to love you that we may fully serve you, whom to serve is perfect freedom, in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Prayer to forsake myself for Jesus:

Lord Jesus, let me know myself and know You, And desire nothing save only You.

Let me hate myself and love You. Let me do everything for the sake of You. Let me humble myself and exalt You. Let me think of nothing except You. Let me die to myself and live in You. Let me accept whatever happens as from You. Let me banish self and follow You, And ever desire to follow You.

Let me fly from myself and take refuge in You, That I may deserve to be defended by You. Let me fear for myself, let me fear You, And let me be among those who are chosen by You. Let me distrust myself and put my trust in You. Let me be willing to obey for the sake of You. Let me cling to nothing save only to You, And let me be poor because of You. Look upon me, that I may love You. Call me that I may see You, and for ever enjoy You. Amen.

Prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary

Blessed Virgin Mary, who can worthily repay you with praise and thanks for having rescued a fallen world by your generous consent? Receive our gratitude, and by your prayers obtain the pardon of our sins. Take our prayers into the sanctuary of heaven and enable them to make our peace with God.

Holy Mary, help the miserable, strengthen the discouraged, comfort the sorrowful, pray for your people, plead for the clergy, intercede for all women consecrated to God. May all who venerate you feel now your help and protection. Be ready to help us when we pray, and bring back to us the answers to our prayers. Make it your continual concern to pray for the people of God, for you were blessed by God and were made worthy to bear the Redeemer of the world, who lives and reigns forever. Amen.

Novena to St. Augustine

O Glorious St. Augustine, our dear holy father, vouchsafe me your blessing; look down upon me with compassion, and obtain for me to be a worthy child of yours. Let me say with a love like that with which your seraphic heart burned for Jesus: “Too late have I known Thee, too late have I loved Thee,” so that I may repair my past sinful life by the most ardent, generous love for my divine Spouse, “for many sins are forgiven those who love much.” Ask for me a share in your profound humility, that I may ever be little and humble in my own eyes, preferring to be made little account of, in order to resemble Him, Who underwent such deep humiliations for the love of me. Obtain also for me, my beloved holy father, an unbounded courage and confidence, and that the sight of my faults may humble, but not deject me. Make me unchangeably patient and kind to all; at the hour of death may you own me for your child, and may I, in your dear company, praise almighty God for all eternity. Amen.

The Prayer You are Christ by Saint Augustine of Hippo

You are Christ, my Holy Father, my Tender God, my Great King, my Good Shepherd, my Only Master, my Best Helper, my Most Beautiful and my Beloved, my Living Bread, my Priest Forever, my Leader to my Country, my True Light, my Holy Sweetness, my Straight Way, my Excellent Wisdom, my Pure Simplicity, my Peaceful Harmony, my Entire Protection, my Good Portion, my Everlasting Salvation.

Christ Jesus, Sweet Lord, why have I ever loved, why in my whole life have I ever desired anything except You, Jesus my God? Where was I when I was not in spirit with You? Now, from this time forth, do you, all my desires, grow hot, and flow out upon the Lord Jesus: run… you have been tardy until now; hasten where you are going; seek Whom you are seeking. O, Jesus may he who loves You not be an anathema; may he who loves You not be filled with bitterness.

O, Sweet Jesus, may every good feeling that is fitted for Your praise, love You, delight in You, adore You! God of my heart, and my Portion, Christ Jesus, may my heart faint away in spirit, and may You be my Life within me! May the live coal of Your Love grow hot within my spirit and break forth into a perfect fire; may it burn incessantly on the altar of my heart; may it glow in my innermost being; may it blaze in hidden recesses of my soul; and in the days of my consummation may I be found consummated with You! Amen.