Augustine For Today
January 23 - Saint Josephine Mary of Beniganim, O.S.A.
In these two women [Martha and Mary] two lives are typified: the present life and that of the future, the life of toil and that of peace, the wretched and the blissful, the temporal and the eternal. Both are blameless, both, I say, are praiseworthy; but one is laborious and the other leisured. Martha was the image of things present, Mary of things to come. In Martha’s employment we share, for Mary’s we hope. Let us work well at the one that we may fully possess the other.
January 22 - Saint Vincent
We should think that, by some miracle, as Vincent suffered, one person was speaking while another was being tortured. And this, my brothers, was true; it was really the truth; another person was speaking. Christ in the Gospel promised this to those who were to be his witnesses, to those he was preparing for contests of this kind. For he said: Do not give thought to how or what you are to speak. For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father who speaks within you. Thus, it was Vincent’s body that suffered, but the Spirit that spoke. And at his voice, impiety was not only vanquished but human frailty was given consolation.
Sermon 276, 1-2
January 21 - Saint Agnes
What a great things charity is! The soul of the scriptures, the force of prophecy, the saving power of the sacraments, the fruit of faith, the wealth of the poor, the life of the dying. What could be more magnanimous than to die for the godless, what more kindly than to love one’s enemies.
Sermon 350, 3
January 20 - Saints Fabian & Sebastian
We have been promised something we do not yet possess, and because the promise was made by one who keep his word, we trust him and are glad; but insofar as possession is delayed, we can only yearn and long for it. It is good for us to persevere in longing until we receive what was promised, and yearning is over; then praise alone will remain.
On Psalm 148
January 19 - Saint Mario
He prays for us as our priest, he prays in us as our head, he is the object of our prayers as our God. Let us then recognize both our voice in his, and his voice in ours. When something is said, especially in prophecy, about the Lord Jesus Christ that seems to belong to a condition of lowliness unworthy of God, we must not hesitate to ascribe this condition to one who did not hesitate to unite himself with us.
On Psalm 85
January 18 - Saint Prisca
We have heard in the Gospel how the Lord Jesus Christ was tempted by the devil in the wilderness. Certainly Christ was tempted by the devil. … If in Christ we have been tempted, in him we overcome the devil. Do you think only of Christ’s temptation and fail to think of his victory? See yourself as tempted in him, and see yourself as victorious in him. He could have kept the devil from himself; but if he were not tempted he could not teach you how to triumph over temptation.
On Psalm 60
January 17 - Saint Antony, Abbot
“O Lord, our God, let the shelter of your wings give us hope. Protect us and uphold us. You will be the Support that upholds us from childhood till the hair on our heads is grey. When you are our strength we are strong, but when our strength is our own, we are weak. In you our good abides forever, and when we turn away from it we turn to evil. Let us come home at last to you, O Lord, for fear that we be lost.”
Confessions, IV, 16
January 16 - Saint Marcellus
“My love of you, O Lord, is not some vague feeling; it is positive and certain. Your word struck into my heart and from that moment I loved you. Besides this, all about me, heaven and earth and all that they contain proclaim that I should love you, and their message never ceases to sound in the ears of all mankind, so that there is no excuse for any not to love you.”
Confessions, X 6
January 15 - Saint Maurus
“Let me know you, for you are the God who knows me; let me recognize you as you have recognized me. You are the power of my soul; come into it and make it fit for yourself, so that you may have it and hold it without stain or wrinkle. This is my hope; this is why I speak as I do; this is the hope that brings me joy, when my joy is in what is to save me.”
Confessions, X, 1
January 14 - Saint Felix of Nola
“Every other vice prompts people to do evil deeds; but pride lies in ambush even for good deeds, to destroy them. What advantage is it to scatter abroad and give to the poor and become poor oneself, if the mind in its misery becomes prouder in despising riches than it was in possessing them?”
The Rule, Chapter 1
January 13 - Saomt Ilario
“This is my recommendation to you, my brothers and sisters; give earthly bread, and knock at the door of the heavenly bread; the Lord is bread. ‘I’, He said, ‘am the bread of life’. How will He give it to you, if you do not give it to the person in need? … So while He is the Lord, and the real Lord, and no need of our goods, all the same, in order that we might do something for Him, He was ready to be hungry in His poor.”
Sermon 359, 5-6
January 12 - Saint Modesto
“Do justice and you will have peace, thus justice and peace will embrace. If you do not love justice you will not have peace. These two virtues, peace and justice, love and embrace one another in such a way that whoever does justice will encounter the peace that embraces justice. They are two friends.”
On the Psalms 84, 12
January 11 - Saint Eugene
Don’t let Satan creep up on you, saying what he customarily says: ‘Enjoy yourself in God’s creation. Why did he make those things if not for you to enjoy them?’ And they get drunk, and they ruin themselves, and they forget their creator. As long as they use created things not temperately by inordinately, the creator is disdained. Of such persons the Apostle says, ‘They adored and served the creature rather than the creator, who is blessed forever.’ God doesn’t forbid you to love those things, but you must not love them in expectation of blessedness. Rather, you must favor and praise them in such a way that you love the creator.
On the First Letter of John 2,11
January 10 - Saint Aldo
Who are the ones that feed themselves? Those about whom the apostle says, ‘For all see their own advantage, not that of Jesus Christ’ (Phil. 2,21). … So since the sole reason people are put in charge is to consider the interests of those they are in charge of, and not at all to attend to their own advantage but only that of those they are in service of - anyone put in charge who just enjoys being in control and seeks his own honor and looks to his own convenience is feeding himself, not the sheep.
Sermon 46, 2
January 9 - Saint Julian
We already know the head and the body. He is the head and we the body. When we hear His voice we must understand it as coming from the head and the body, because the whole suffered. We also suffered in him and, what we suffer. He suffers in us. If a man’s head suffers, can we say that the hands suffer not? Or, if the hands suffer, can it be said that the head suffers not?
Exposition on the Psalms 62,2
January 8 - Saint Severino
“When I am frightened by what I am for you, then I am consoled by what I am with you. For you I am the bishop, with you I am a Christian. The first is an office, the second a grace; the first a danger, the second salvation.”
Sermon 340, 1
January 7 - Saint Raymond of Penyafort
Keep always in mind that we must love God and our neighbor: Love God with your whole heart, your whole soul, and your whole mind, and your neighbor as yourself. These two commandments must be always in your thoughts and in your hearts, treasured, acted on, fulfilled. Love of God is the first to be commanded, but love of neighbor is the first to be put into practice. In giving two commandments of love Christ would not commend to you first your neighbor and then God but first God and then your neighbor … By loving your neighbor you prepare your eye to see God.”
January 6 - The Epiphany of the Lord
To us, too, the heavens have declared the glory of God; we, too, have been led to worship Christ by the truth blazing from the Gospel, as by a star from the sky. We, too, have received with ears of faith a prophecy that was famous in the Jewish nation, like a standing indictment of the Jews for not accompanying us. We, too, by acknowledging and praising Christ, as both king and priest and the one who died for us, have, as it were, honored him with gold and frankincense and myrrh. It only remains for us to spread the good news about him, by pursuing a new way, not returning by the way we came.
January 5 - Saint John Neumann
The Lord Jesus wished to be a man for our sakes. Don’t hold this kindness cheap; Wisdom is lying there on the earth. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. O food and bread of the angels! The angels take their fill of you, they are content with you, and they don’t grow tired of you; they derive their life from you, their wise judgment from you, their bliss from you. And where are you for my sake? In a cramped and crowded hostelry, in rags, in a manger.
Sermon 196, 3
January 4 - Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton
By loving other people and caring for them you make progress on your journey. Where are you traveling if not to the Lord God, to him whom we should love with our whole heart, our whole soul, or our whole mind? We have not yet reached his presence, but we have our neighbor at our side. Support, then, this companion of your pilgrimage if you want to come into the presence of the one with whom you desire to remain forever.”
Homily on the Gospel of John, 17