Voices ever ancient, ever new. Saint Augustine 2013.

Commenting on Matthew 23:27 from today’s Scriptures, Saint John Chrysostom writes:

“You have been counted worthy to become temples of God. But you have instead suddenly become more like sepulchers, having the same sort of smell. This is dreadful. It is extreme wretchedness that one in whom Christ dwells and in whom the Holy Spirit has worked such great works should turn out to be a sepulcher, a place for death. What wretchedness is this? What mourning and lamentation does this call for! The members of the body of Christ have become a tomb of uncleanness? Remember your sonship and how you were born. Consider of what things you have been counted worthy. Recall what sort of garment you received in baptism. You were intended to be a temple without fault, beautiful, not adorned with gold or pearls but with the spirit that is more precious than these. You are hardly ready to appear in the city above if you remain a sepulcher below. For if here this is forbidden, much more there. Even here you are an object of scorn. You carry around a dead soul. You are shunned. Be honest. If anyone were to go around carrying about a dead body, wouldn’t everyone else rush for cover! Wouldn’t they all flee? But this is what you are like. You go about carrying a corpse far more grievous than this. It is a soul deadened by sins, a soul paralyzed.” (The Gospel of Matthew, Homily 73)

Today is also the memorial of Saint Augustine of Hippo, a Father of the Church. Click here for an excerpt from his writings (the selection is taken from today’s Liturgy of the Hours, Office of Readings).

Pope Benedict XVI devoted a number of General Audiences to Saint Augustine: Audience 1, Audience 2, Audience 3, Audience 4, and Audience 5.

Renew in your Church, we pray, O Lord,
that spirit with which You endowed
Your Bishop Saint Augustine that,
filled with the same spirit,
we may thirst for you,
the sole fount of true wisdom,
and seek you, the author of heavenly love.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
Who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.