Message Series


Saints of the Day

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Trinity Sunday

June 11th, 2017

The greatest dogma of the Christian faith is the mystery of the Holy Trinity. (Mystery, in this connection, means a supernatural fact revealed by God which in itself transcends the natural power of human reasoning.) During the first thousand years of Christianity there was no special feast celebrated in honor of this mystery, but, as Pope Alexander II (1073) declared, every day of the liturgical year was devoted to the honor and adoration of the Sacred Trinity.

However, to counteract the Arian heresy, which denied the fullness of divinity to the Son, a special Mass text in honor of the Holy Trinity was introduced and incorporated in the Roman liturgical books. This Mass was not assigned for a definite day but could be used on certain Sundays according to the private devotion of each priest. (Such Mass texts which are not prescribed but open to choice on certain days are now known as “votive Masses.”) From the ninth century on, various bishops of the Frankish kingdoms promoted in their own dioceses a special feast of the Holy Trinity, usually on the Sunday after Pentecost. They used a Mass text that Abbot Alcuin (804) is said to have composed.

Thus the custom of observing a special feast in honor of the Trinity became increasingly popular in the northern countries of Europe. Several synods prescribed it for their respective territories in France, Germany, England, and The Netherlands. In the thirteenth century the orders of the Benedictines and Cistercians adopted the annual celebration of the feast. It was kept on different Sundays in different places, until in 1334 Pope John XXII accepted the festival into the official calendar of the Western Church and ordered that henceforth it should be held everywhere on the Sunday after Pentecost.

A new Mass text was written and published. It is interesting to note that the beautiful Preface of the Trinity as read today is the same one that appeared in the first text of the Sacramentary of Saint Gregory the Great.5 Most of the other prayers are of later origin. The Divine Office in its present form was arranged under Pope Saint Pius V (1572). It is one of the most sublime offices of the breviary.

The Feast of the Holy Trinity now belongs among the great annual festivals of Christianity. Although it is not observed with additional liturgical services outside the Mass, its celebration quickly took root in the hearts and minds of the faithful, and in all countries of Europe popular traditions are closely associated with this feast.



Prayer for Migrants

January 8th, 2017

MERCIFUL AND LOVING FATHER, We beseech you, open our hearts so that we may provide hospitality and refuge to migrants who are lonely, afraid, and far from their homes. Give us the courage to welcome every stranger as Christ in our midst, to invite them into our communities as a demonstration of Christ’s love for us. We pray that when we encounter the other, we see in her the face of your Son, when we meet a stranger, that we take his hand in welcome. Help us to live in solidarity with one another, to seek justice for those who are persecuted and comfort for those who are suffering. We ask this 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. Amen. — United States Council of Catholic Bishops prayer card 



Prayer for the New Year, 2017

My brothers and sisters, every year is a beautiful gift from God!

God’s gift is this time of our lives. We have this precious time to love and to do good; to make peace; to build his Kingdom, the city of love and truth and justice. This year, let us truly be a people who make time for God – with our hearts open to our Father’s love for us; with our hands always open and ready to serve our brothers and sisters in love. Let us make the most of our time, to really live as children of God.

So let us ask Mary, our Blessed Mother, the Queen of Peace, to intercede for us that we will use our time wisely in this New Year – to grow in our spiritual life and in our practice of our faith; so that we can be good children of God and share God’s peace and joy with others.

I pray that Jesus, the Prince of Peace, may grant each one of you and your families – and everyone in our city and in the whole world – a real and lasting peace and a truly happy New Year.

Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us! —Pope Benedict, World Day of Peace 2011



An Advent Prayer – Henri Nouwen

Lord Jesus, Master of both the light and the darkness, send your Holy Spirit upon our preparations for Christmas.
We who have so much to do seek quiet spaces to hear your voice each day.
We who are anxious over many things look forward to your coming among us.
We who are blessed in so many ways long for the complete joy of your kingdom.
We whose hearts are heavy seek the joy of your presence.
We are your people, walking in darkness, yet seeking the light.
To you we say, “Come Lord Jesus!”



Year of Mercy Reflections


From Laudato Si, Section 23

April 10th, 2016

Greenhouse gases… “Do not allow the warmth of the sun’s rays, reflected by the earth, to be dispersed in space. The problem is aggravated by a model of development based on the intensive use of fossil fuels, which is at the heart of the world-wide energy system. Another determining factor has been an increase in changed uses of the soil, principally deforestation for agricultural purposes”.


From Laudato Si, Section 21

April 3rd, 2016

Each year hundreds of millions of tons of waste are generated, much of it non-biodegradable, highly toxic and radioactive, from homes and businesses, from construction and demolition sites, from clinical, electronic and industrial sources….Industrial waste and chemical products utilized in cities and agricultural areas can lead to bioaccumulation in the organisms of the local population, even when levels of toxins in those places are low. Frequently no measures are taken until after people’s health has been irreversibly affected.


From Laudato Si, Section 175

February 14th, 2016

The same mindset which stands in the way of making radical decisions to reverse the trend of global warming also stands in the way of achieving the goal of eliminating poverty.  The twenty-first century, while maintaining systems of governance inherited from the past, is witnessing a weakening of the power of the nation states, chiefly because the economic and financial sectors, being transnational, tend to prevail over the political.  It is essential to devise stronger and more efficiently organized international institutions, with functionaries who are appointed fairly by agreement among national governments, and empowered to impose sanctions.

A Right to Justice

January 24th, 2016

Jesus stood up in his home town and announced his program: to bring glad tidings to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives, recovery of sight to the blind and release to prisoners. It may not sound particularly religious to some, but it was a program established by one who had returned to Galilee “in the power of the Spirit.” Today’s liturgy juxtaposes the story of Jesus reading in the synagogue with the story of Ezra reading the law to people upon their return from exile. The suggestion is that Jesus’ program is a kind of law, a rule that should govern our lives. Bringing good news to the poor, liberating people from all their oppressions, this is not some optional activity that one can engage in only if one is inclined. It is “the law of the Lord,” it is the program for which we have all been anointed. The unity and peace we pray for at the beginning of Mass will only come if Jesus’ followers accept his program as their own. In his plan of salvation. God gave Israel its law. … Of this collection of laws, love of God above all things and of neighbor as oneself already constitute the center. But the justice which must govern relations between people, and the law which is its juridical expression, also belong to the sum and substance of the biblical law. … It is in this context that one should appreciate the biblical law’s care for the poor, the needy, the widow and the orphan: They have a right to justice according to the juridical ordinances of the people of God.

Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Instruction on Christian Freedom and Liberation,1986: 45

A Perspective of Justice – At Work in the World

January 17th, 2016

Our land is indeed desolate: poisons float around in the air, toxins flow in our streams and lakes, and chemicals pollute the soil. The land is forsaken because of “the tensions and the tragedies of sin,” and forsaken, too, are many of the people who live on the land. Or to put it in terms of today’s Gospel, the wine has run out and the party seems to be over. It does not have to be that way, however. The people can “be called ‘My Delight,’ and your land ‘Espoused’.” There is still choice wine left to be experienced: the party does not have to end. We can “sing to the Lord a new song.” Two things will have to happen for things to change. The first is the action of the Lord. Jesus’ hour has come. We must turn to him, as Mary did, and have confidence in his power to effect change. The other thing that must take place is the application of our gifts to the solution of the problems afflicting our land and the people living on it. “To each person the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.” We must all use our unique gifts and unite them to the action of Jesus at work in the world. This is “the way to peace in the world” that we pray for at the beginning of Mass. If we follow this way, “no more shall men call you ‘forsaken,’ or your land ‘desolate’.” The option for the poor embedded in the Gospel and the Church’s teaching makes us aware that the poor suffer most directly from environmental decline and have the least access to relief from their suffering. Indigenous peoples die with their forests and grasslands. … Nature will truly enjoy its second spring only when humanity has compassion for its own weakest members.

U.S. Bishops, Renewing the Earth, 1991: III, F

Pope Francis Quotes

  • Although the life of a person is in a land full of thorns and weeds, there is always a space in which the good seed can grow. You have to trust God.
  • The Son of God became incarnate in the souls of men to instill the feeling of brotherhood. All are brothers and all children of God.
  • God always has patience.
  • Grace is not part of consciousness; it is the amount of light in our souls, not knowledge nor reason.
  • Jesus teaches us another way: Go out. Go out and share your testimony, go out and interact with your brothers, go out and share, go out and ask. Become the Word in body as well as spirit.




At its root, true hospitality is a spiritual discipline that reminds us of how we ourselves have been received by Christ. Hospitality can be extended in countless ways: A smile, an introduction, an invitation are all small exercises that, as with any exercise, are building blocks to something greater. The more one practices hospitality, the better one can welcome and receive others.

In a perfect world parish leadership would set the tone for welcoming visitors through programs and structures. But individuals who are part of a less-hospitable parish don’t have an excuse: It’s the job of each one of us to reach out, even just a little bit, to the people around us, both those we recognize and those we don’t. Even if there’s no social time after Mass, it’s still possible to strike up a conversation or introduce oneself to someone sitting in the next pew.

— Heather Grennan Gary, U.S. Catholic

Past Message Series

In our message series, we dig into one aspect of the Gospel over a period of weeks. We reflect as a community through online videos/resources, handouts, preaching, activities, and small group discussions.

Our focus at St. Augustine is how to live out the Gospel—the Good News—in our daily lives as intentional disciples. Christianity is not a spectator sport.

In our message series, we dig into one aspect of the Gospel over a period of weeks. We reflect as a community through online videos/resources, handouts, preaching, activities, and small group discussions.



Gospel Link Lent imageHelping Without Hurting ● Lent 2015
God is not shy about taking the side of the poor and obligating us to do the same. While we may want to help, good intentions are not enough and our attempts can do harm—to ourselves and those we try to help. How can we best help those in need, using Gospel values?

Advent Conspiracy ● November 30 – December 24The Christmas story is a story of love, hope, redemption and relationship. So, what happened? How did it turn into stuff, stress and debt? Somehow, we’ve traded the best story in the world for the story of what’s on sale.In 2006 five pastors imagined a better Christmas practice for their own communities. Today, Advent Conspiracy is a global movement of people and churches resisting the cultural Christmas narrative of consumption by choosing a revolutionary Christmas through Worshipping Fully, Spending Less, Giving More and Loving All.

Faith@WorkFaith@Work ● September-October 2014
Whether you are in a traditional job, searching for a job, in retirement, a student, a stay-at-home parent, or in another situation, your occupation–the work you do from day-to-day matters to God.

World As It Should BeThe World As It Should Be ● July 2014
Jesus talked about the “Kingdom of God” more than any other subject. It was his big idea: a vision of the world as it should be. How well do we understand this “already begun” kingdom we’re helping build—on earth as it is in heaven? And how does it change how we live?
One TableOne Table ● June 2014
Jesus was all about sharing meals, and he did it in a counter-cultural way: eating with the wrong people and breaking the rules of sharing. How do we bring Jesus’ example of One Table living into our lives and neighborhoods?
Living More With LessLiving More With Less ● Lent 2014
God has abundantly given us more than enough food, energy, and other resources. But when we hoard and binge, it’s not good for ourselves or our neighbors. Our culture encourages us to want more of everything. Trusting that God will provide and asking, “How much is enough?” is the path to healing ourselves and our world.
Game Plan Game Plan ● January-February 2014
God has a “game plan” for each of our lives. God has put each of us on earth for a purpose. How do we discover God’s plan for us and cooperate with it?
Simply Christmas

Simply Christmas ● Advent-Christmas 2013-2014
This Advent/Christmas season, we invite you to do things a little more simply. The holidays can be stressful and get a little bit out of control. Let’s support each others so we can celebrate the holidays intentionally. As we prepare for the coming of our Savior, we will reflect on making room in our lives for what matters the most to us: family time, those in need, relationships, and most importantly our God.

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