University of Pittsburgh

Agustín, San

St. Augustine, Aurelius Augustinus, bishop of Hippo and Church father, 356-430, author of De Civitate Dei, Confessiones and other works

Fishburn and Hughes: "One of the four Fathers of the Christian Church. In his youth Augustine abandoned the Christian faith, but he returned to it in 386. When he became bishop of Hippo he described his spiritual struggle in his Confessions. After his conversion he was fully engaged in church activities and religious controversies, denouncing the preachings of the various Christian sects which had sprung up before orthodoxy had been formalised. Dominant among these sects were the Manichaeans, who saw the world as the scene of a conflict between good and evil, and the Pelagians, who held that the sin of Adam did not affect the rest of humanity - a doctrine expounded by Augustine's pupil Coelestus, who was later tried and excommunicated. CF 202: According to Augustine all human nature is sinful and divine intervention is imperative. This view dominates his moral and theological treatises, his Letters, the commentaries on the Gospel, and his main work Civitas Dei ('City of God'), which elaborates the theory of human predestination: the principle that God has established a priori who will be damned and who saved." (18-19)