AUGUSTINIAN LAY COMMUNITY
The Lecceto Lay Community swung into operation in 1999, when a group of five young lay people came together to share an experience of community living for a year under the direction of the Augustinians based in Brookvale, NSW.
Lecceto, named after an Augustinian monastery in Italy calls young people aged between 18 and 35 to live in Christian community, based on Augustinian spirituality.
2000 saw three more young people forming the second Lecceto community and clearly loving every minute of their unique opportunity to learn first hand about Augustinian spirituality and the famous Augustinian hospitality!
OSA & Lecceto Community, 2001.
One of the Lecceto members has said: "The community program encourages and affirms young people in their faith formation and Christian journey. It teaches us how to embrace Christ-like qualities, and particularly to model the self-emptying love of Christ."
The young people, involved in the one year program, continue to work or study, as they did before joining Lecceto but also commit to share evening prayer, a community evening once a week (which includes Mass, a church teaching or social activity) and sharing, wherever possible, the evening meal together.
The lay Augustinians also seek to serve others, following the example of Christ, by helping in some form of pastoral service on a regular basis. Over the years this has involved assisting in the kitchen of an inner-city hostel, working in a programme which provides food for those in need and voluntary staffing of a hospital kiosk.
OSA & Lecceto Community, 2000.
A series of weekend retreats are also integral with the Augustinian lay experience. The Augustinian Director of the Lecceto program said of Lecceto, "these have been great years for all of us, lay and religious, who have shared in this experience. We have all been gifted with one another, have learned from one another and been supported by one another."
"As the young people go forth from the community, each carries a bit of wisdom which has emerged from the achievements and disappointments, the strengths and challenges, the faith and the friendship that has gone to make up the year they have shared together. They realise Christ has been present to all - in the presence of each other. As Augustine puts it so well, the Lecceto Lay Community lives in one mind and one heart."
OSA & Lecceto Community, 1999.