14 June 2019

On Augustinian Epithets

As I continue to rejoice in Wednesday's unexpected and most welcome news that the Holy Father Pope Francis granted to Father Augustine Tolton the title of Venerable, I found myself looking forward to the day when we can mention Father Gus' name in the third Eucharistic Prayer. I know such a day is still quite some years away, and I may not live to see it, but I still long for it eagerly.

As I thought about that day, I began to ponder how we might name him. At first I thought we might simply call him Saint Augustine, as, for example, I do when I mention the Leper Priest simply as Saint Damien.

But then I began to wonder how I might mention him at the parish at which I presently serve as Pastor, that of Saint Augustine [of Hippo]. Surely, though I, I would not say "...with Saint Augustine and Saint Augustine, and with all the Saints..." That would be, to say the least, a bit odd and likely confusing to some, if not many.

Then I thought I might say, "...with Saint Augustine of Hippo and Saint Augustine Tolton..." but that did not seem to be right, either. So then I thought I might say, "...Saint Augustine of Hippo and Saint Augustine of Quincy..." That seemed right to me, but then I wondered if it would be more fitting to call him "Saint Augustine of Chicago" because he died in the Windy City. That, however, seemed very improper to me because his heart always remained in Quincy, in the Gem City.

All of this is what happens when I spend long hours in a car by myself.

As I continued to explore this scenario in my mind, I began to think about the other Saint Augustines. The only two that came to my mind were Saint Augustine of Hippo and Saint Augustine of Canterbury. Saint Augustine of Hippo was born in Thagaste but died in Hippo where he served as the Bishop. Saint Augustine of Canterbury was born in Tarsus but died in Canterbury where he served as the Archbishop.

From here, I returned to thinking that Father Gus could be Saint Augustine of Chicago, but I still did not much like this idea. Suddenly it occurred to me that Saint Thomas Aquinas died at Fossanova but is still known as "of Aquino," after the region in which he was born. But would that mean it should be Saint Augustine of Brush Creek? I was not satisfied with this, either.

In the end, I did not resolve my hypothetical dilemma.

No comments:

Post a Comment