Pope contributes to Augustine’s church in Algeria
August 26, 2012 § Leave a comment
Pope Benedict XVI has given money to help restore an Algerian basilica dedicated to St. Augustine overlooking the city where the saint served as bishop.
Le Pape Benoît XVI a fait un don pour la restauration de la basilique Saint-Augustin surplombant la ville antique d’Hippone, aujourd’hui Annaba , en Algérie. “Un lieu symbole, symbole fort de convivialité, de la fraternité humaine et spirituelle entre les deux côtés de la Méditerranée, entre chrétiens et musulmans, entre l’Occident et l’islam […]”, selon l’évêque de Constantine, Mgr Paul Desfarges.
Monsignor Paul Desfarges, Augustine’s successor as bishop of Constantine-Hippo, said the basilica and the hill on which it stands, overlooking the ruins of the Roman city of Hippo, are symbols of human brotherhood.
“We all know that St. Augustine is dear to the pope’s heart,” Desfarges said.
Augustine served as bishop of Hippo from 395 to 430, a time when the Roman empire was starting to fall apart. His book, “The City of God,” described the church as a spiritual entity distinct from Rome and its empire.
The basilica, which is about 100 years old, is in what is now the city of Annaba, Algeria. Its architecture includes Roman-Byzantine details and Moorish ones.