August 27, 2017

I.  “Too Late Have I Loved You!” Born to a pagan father and a very devout Christian mother, Augustine was a wild, unruly young man who later became one of Western Christianity’s most influential figures. Augustine tried it all—living with a woman, fathering a child out of wedlock, and dabbling in Manichaeism (explained the existence of evil with a flawed creation in which God took no role in forming, but rather was the result of Satan striking out against God). Through his mother’s prayers and a friendship with Ambrose, his teacher, Augustine eventually converted to Christianity, was ordained a priest, and then became bishop of Hippo in Africa in the year 396. His writings, which helped shape Christianity, formulated theories and doctrines on original sin, just war, human will, divine predestination, the Trinity, and Christology. In his autobiography, Confessions, Augustine penned, “Late have I loved you, Beauty so ancient and so new. Late have I loved you.” The feast day of Saint Augustine is Monday, August 28th. This might be a good day to come to Mass to pray for a wayward child.

II.  Money Raffle & Vacation Destination Raffle: with our Founders’ Day Dinner and Raffle drawing less than three weeks away (September 16), please return your raffle tickets as soon as possible. In downsizing our picnic, the parish is relying on everyone selling raffle tickets to make up some of the deficit from our picnic. Thank you!

III. What is the “Cement” that Keeps Couples Yoked?  Keep your eyes open for the “Beloved” series, which will begin Sunday, September 17, 6:00-8:00 p.m., in the Community Center. Yes, couples must be praying together! Yes, couples must spend quality time together! Yes, couples must learn the skills of healthy, productive communicating. Yes, couples must keep God at the center of their relationship. Couples must take time to enrich their marriage relationship. Set aside some time for “Beloved.” Marriage Matters at the Cathedral (reserve a spot and get updates)

IV.  Gratitude and Financial Accountability: if you did not receive a copy of how St. Stephen Cathedral spent God’s money the last fiscal year, and the budget for the coming year, you can find this on the tables at our church doors. Averaging $19,808.00 per week should not be a difficult goal if everyone is committed and contributes. We count our blessings! By the way, we have 90 parishioners on WeShare—you may want to try it!

Belatedly I loved thee, O Beauty so ancient and so new, belatedly I loved thee. For see, thou wast within and I was without, and I sought thee out there. Unlovely, I rushed heedlessly among the lovely things thou hast made. Thou wast with me, but I was not with thee. These things kept me far from thee; even though they were not at all unless they were in thee. Thou didst call and cry aloud, and didst force open my deafness. Thou didst gleam and shine, and didst chase away my blindness. Thou didst breathe fragrant odors and I drew in my breath; and now I pant for thee. I tasted, and now I hunger and thirst. Thou didst touch me, and I burned for thy peace.”      St. Augustine, from “Confessions”