Greeting of the Prior General to the Members of the Ostia Community
I am happy to be able to offer you greetings in the name of the Augustinian Community in Rome and also the prayers, good wishes, and support of the Augustinians throughout the world.
This new initiative for the Augustinians in Ireland is an opportunity for renewal. Any time we have the opportunity to begin anew we are given an opportunity to reflect on how the grace of God continually offers us the possibility to encounter his loving presence through our encounters with each other. I am happy to hear that the name of this initiative is the Ostia Community.
You may already know very well about the encounter which St. Augustine and his mother had in the port city of Ostia. It was there where they experienced together an intense moment of prayer. I pray that this year of living as young students in an intentional community which highlights our Augustinian charism may be a year of blessings and grace. Take advantage of the opportunities you will have during this year to pray together, share meals together, work together, recreate together, and to learn together. The Augustinian charism of community life is seen most clearly in the friendships we form. As we ask for God’s blessing upon this community I offer you some words from the Confessions of St. Augustine:
We would teach and learn from each other, sadly missing any who were absent and welcoming them when they returned. Such signs of friendship sprang from the hearts of friends… signs to be read in smiles, words, glances and a thousand gracious gestures. So were sparks kindled and our minds were fused inseparably, out of many becoming one.
May this experience bring you many opportunities to enjoy the blessings and gifts of community life and may you have many opportunities to share those gifts with all who may visit here and be part of the future of this Ostia Community in Limerick.
I thank Fr. John Hennebry OSA, the Prior Provincial of the Irish Augustinians, and Fr. Noel Hession OSA, the director of this programme, for their initiative and creative insight in developing this new programme of assisting others to encounter our Augustinian charism of community by offering this space for people to encounter each other, to encounter themselves, and to encounter God.
May God Bless You,
Fr. Alejandro Moral Antón
Prior General of the Augustinian Order
(on his visit to this residence in September 2017)