For Ash Wednesday: a reading from Augustine of Hippo

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This is a repost from previous years, for I find this excerpt from Augustine of Hippo from Faith and Life: Readings Compiled from Ancient Writers to be powerful:

In the night of this world a lion is prowling abroad, seeking whom he may devour; it is our adversary the Devil. Amid the night of this world, so full of perils and temptations, who would not fear? who would not tremble to the depths of his being, lest he should be adjudged to deserve being hurled into the devouring jaws of so cruel an enemy?  Therefore we must fast and pray. And when should we rather do so, when more earnestly, than at the approach of the solemnity of our Lord’s Passion, by which annual celebration the thought of that same night is, so to speak, again engraven upon our memory, lest it should be effaced by forgetfulness, lest that roaring…

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