The Augustinian Community of Ss. Quattro Coronati
by the Augustinian Nuns
The Augustinian Community of Santi Quattro Coronati We are Augustinian Contemplative Nuns and we live in this beautiful and historic basilica dedicated to the Four Holy Crowned Martyrs (Santi Quattro Coronati) on the Celian hill, a short distance from the Basilica of St John Lateran and from the Colosseum. Our monastic community has lived since 1564 in this complex, at one time a cardinal's palace and a fortress which defended the ancient residence of the popes at St John Lateran.This basilica was constructed to house the relics of many brother and sister martyrs who, by accepting the Gospel, gave their lives for Christ and His spouse, the Church, in the nearby Colisseum and elsewhere on this hill.
But who are the Augustinian Nuns? We are daughters of that great convert from Hippo in Africa, St Augustine, Father and Doctor of the Church. At the time of his death, St Augustine left behind monasteries filled with monks and nuns who, from the fifth century until today, have kept his heart alive within the Church.
Once converted to God, Augustine gave life to a form of monasticism which takes as its model the first community of apostles in Jerusalem, brothers and sisters who, in imitation of Christ's first disciples, live together and search together for the face of God, through a life of sincere friendship, in constant meditation on the Word of God, in praise, in passionate love for the Church and for humanity. Augustine the monk never moved away from the city, but remained immersed in it and yet apart from it at the same time. His monks live for God alone and for others, contributing not material goods, but praise and longing for God.
We, daughters of Augustine, live in this basilica at the heart of the city of Rome where art itself sings of divine and human beauty in order to tell everyone how beautiful it is to live for God alone and that it is worth the sacrifice to give one's life for Him, a Father who has begotten us and who loves us, and who cries out day, as He did 1600 years ago to Augustine, 'clothe yourself anew in Christ (in love), return to your heart, there you shall find a space for life - an inhabitable space of great depth - where man is revealed to himself - a space for true encounters.
Our monastic Community, attentive to the voice of the Church and to the spirit of Augustine, is always here in this basilica. In its presence and prayers this community makes its own the anxieties, the longings, the hopes of every human heart.