The Common Life
Every religious community in the Church has its own particular charism; that special spirit left it by its founder, that special aspect of the Christian message which the community seeks to emphasize (cf. Perf . car. 2b). Christian scripture says that there are a varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit (1 Cor. 12). What are our gifts as Augustinians, and how are we different from other religious communities?
St. Augustine offers consistent, continuous themes and principles, which express what we call Augustinian spirituality. This spirituality, expressed in the rule of life which he wrote and in the general constitutions of our community can be best described as an intense experience of genuine common life to the extent that the hearts and minds of those who live together are fused into one through charity and become focused on God [cf. Rule ch.1].
“Unity in charity” is the very heart of Augustinian life. Seeking God together, as brothers united in the charity and truth of the faith is the primary “work” of any Augustinian community. Out of the context of community life we seek to extend the work of the Gospel according to the needs of the local church in which we find ourselves. Fashioned and formed in this common life, Augustinians labor in many different apostolic endeavors for the Church.