Peter Brown on Augustine
“Yet I think that those who gained most from him were those who had been able actually to see and hear him as he spoke in Church, and, most of all, those who had some contact with the quality of his life among men.”
Augustine typically receives most notoriety for his contributions in the Donatist and Pelagian controversies, his work on De Trinitate and the Confessions. Also, his time as the Bishop of Hippo was quite influential on African and Roman Christianity. Yet, Brown observes that none of those things were his greatest contributions. His greatest contributions were to his church. Those who gained the most from Augustine were those who were closest to Augustine. They saw his life, they heard him speak, they watched him live and love, they were able to observe the quality of his life among men.