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|The Augustinians - Origins and Spirituality|
Author: Luis Marin OSA
From its historical background as descendents of the monastic religious tradition of St. Augustine, and the growth of the Mendicant Orders in the thirteenth centuries, the Order receives the essential elements which constitute its charism: its fundamental principles emanating from the monastic ideals of the Bishop of Hippo, its eremitical roots, its special bonds arising from the intervention of the Holy See, and its condition as a Mendicant Order. These elements all fused together in such a way as to bring about the very essence of our apostolic brotherhood.
Through the course of our history, with the teaching of St. Augustine as our basis and in full consonance with our eremetical roots, we can affirm a contemplative dimension, which ought to be understood, respected, and accepted as a component of Augustinian tradition.
The foundation of Augustinian life is life in common, in which all the brothers by sharing themselves, construct a path directed to God in service to others, and in the communion of all their goods, perfecting themselves through the gift of divine grace. Thus in their life, they reflect the mystery of the Trinity and of the Church, anticipating now on earth the reality they hope for in the future in the Father's house.
Fraternity in the Order should be manifested in a special way in the equality of all the friars, overcoming distinctions arising from privileges as well as social and economic situations.
Community for an Augustinian is not limited to the house in which he lives, nor the circumscription to which he belongs, because our family is the Order; as such the community and the friars will be at the service of the universal Church.