Augustine of Hippo is our founder and the father of an extensive Religious Family that follows his Rule, his teachings and his way of life. In these pages we approach his biography, his sensitivity, his way of life and his proposals to men and women of all times.

The definitive proof that a minimum of vitality is preserved comes to the plant when the elements conspire against it: if it survives drought and frost and turns green, it is because it conserves life. And the Augustinian Recollection is seen, during the 19th century, crushed by the adversities of time.

First in Spain was the War of Independence against the French (1808-1814), which swept away some convents and dispersed many religious; then, the so-called Liberal Triennium (1821-1823) pruned the recollected tree of its weakest branches; finally, in 1835-1836, the confiscation expelled almost all my friars from the convents.

From now on, legally, the Recollection has nothing left but Colombia and the Philippines. And, both in Spain and immediately in Colombia, the lethargic stage of the exclaustrated friars begins, who live scattered in parishes, exercising the ministry. With a stroke of the pen, wicked laws have made my conventual and contemplative Recollection an Order dedicated to the care of souls in the East, with only two convents: Monteagudo (Navarra, Spain) and Manila, where community life is led.

During this entire period, the center and horizon of the Order was the Philippines: there the Recollects multiplied, passing in sixty years from eighty-six -in 1837- to five hundred and sixty religious -in 1898-. It is the strongest missionary wave in the history of the Order, which floods the interior of the Archipelago and carries out the most important work of evangelization and colonization in the Philippines.

Meanwhile, the Recollection is in an emergency situation, with an exceptional system of government, that of the Apostolic Commissioners directly appointed by the Holy See. Of course, even in the most adverse situations, the strong temper of my Recollects responds to the race. Men like Fathers Gabino Sánchez, Toribio Minguella, Enrique Pérez…, and, above all, the saints are there to prove it: Saint Ezequiel Moreno and the seven martyrs sacrificed in Motril (Granada, Spain) in 1936. Authentic sons of my blood, all of them; each one in its corresponding place.

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TABLE OF CONTENT: SAINT AUGUSTINE

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