The Society of Saint Augustine
The Society of St. Augustine, born out of and drawing from the inspiration of these great Augustinian movements, was founded in Amarillo, Texas on October 16, 1981. Seeking to respond to the needs of the times and under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit as well as by human insight, the intention of the members is to embrace a way of life which, by Profession of the Evangelical Counsels, follows the Divine Master and becomes an outstanding sign of the Heavenly Kingdom. Having as its aim the sanctification of its members and a ministry of service to the Church, the members of the Society of Saint Augustine seek to live with renewed fervor and with new norms the form of consecrated life which St. Augustine founded in the Church, illustrated with his doctrine and example and directed with the Holy Rule.
400 A.D. – 1200 AD
The “Servants of God” was the name given by our Father Saint Augustine of Hippo (354 – 430) to the first monastic community that he founded for those who chose to live a life in common, consecrated to Christ Jesus in total dedication to his service. His desire was that they should form a community of chaste love, living together with one mind and one heart intent upon God. With the spirit and the Rule of St. Augustine there later arose many monasteries, for men as well as for women, which flourished in holiness and knowledge as time went on.
1200 A.D. – 1500 A.D.
In the Thirteenth Century, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and the guidance of the Church itself, these communities were formed into a united Augustinian Family with canonical structure. This new family became a mendicant Order or an Apostolic Fraternity, destined for the service of the Church and the sanctification of its members.
1500 A.D. – Present
It was in the bosom of this Augustinian family that the Holy Spirit, after several centuries, desired to awaken a movement toward greater perfection, a more austere and recollected life. This movement admirably manifested itself in 1588, when some religious of the Order of St. Augustine assembled in Toledo in a Chapter of renewal. In virtue of a special collective charism, they resolved to initiate a recollect way life for both men’s and women’s communities, characterized by purer and more intimate union with God and by stricter observance of the Rule.
This determination resulted in the foundation of Augustinian Recollections of Friars, thanks to Saint Alonso de Orozco (1500 – 1591) in 1589, and to Venerable Fray Luis de Leon. They later increased, united in the same yearning for fervor and were governed by a renewed set of Constitutions.
Under the inspiration of Saint Augustine and the witness of the Augustinian Family, many other Augustinian communities have arisen in the Church. Among these is the Society of Saint Augustine.