In honoring St. Augustine today, we particularly honor some of his key thoughts.
He said, “Our hearts are made for you, O Lord, and they cannot rest until they rest in you.” This is everyone’s favorite. It represents Augustine’s complete surrender to God.
He wrote: “The sacrifice aspect of the Mass consists in Christ’s and the worshipers’ interior submission to God.” From the First Century on Christians had been asking in what way their Sunday Eucharist could be a sacrifice. This was Augustine’s clear answer to that.
“A Sacrament is an encounter with God who is the ministering agent for all the Sacraments.” (We needn’t wonder if the priest hearing our confessions is in the state of grace. It is Jesus who performs the Sacrament.)
He wrote, “”No one can be saved by his or her own efforts, unaided by the grace of God.” In Augustine’s Fourth Century, a priest named Pelagius was a forerunner of Twentieth Century’s Norman Vincent Peale in claiming we can save ourselves by our own positive thinking.