Praedicatores misericordiae (IX): Saint Augustine

Saint Augustine (biography, Catholic Encyclopedia) is not strictly speaking a Dominican. However, he remains important in the Dominican tradition due to the fact that Saint Dominic himself was originally an Augustinian Canon and that the first friars opted for the Rule of Saint Augustine as their rule of life when the Order was established.
Saint Augustine was a man who had an intense encounter with the mercy of God and an acute awareness of his need for it, after a life marked by a long search for Truth, Goodness and Beauty, through much trying and failing. He has left us an important corpus of texts, including homilies, theological tracts and his famous self-biography Confessions. Here we share with you an extract of a homily on the passage of John's Gospel telling of Jesus' - Mercy incarnate - meeting with the miserable woman taken in adultery:

The two were left alone, the wretched woman (miseria) and Mercy (misericordia). But the Lord, having struck them through with that dart of justice, deigned not to heed their fall, but, turning away His look from them, again He wrote with His finger on the ground.

But when that woman was left alone, and all they had gone out, He raised His eyes to the woman. We have heard the voice of justice, let us also hear the voice of clemency. For I suppose that woman was the more terrified when she had heard it said by the Lord, He that is without sin of you, let him first cast a stone at her. But they, turning their thought to themselves, and by that very withdrawal having confessed concerning themselves, had left the woman with her great sin to Him who was without sin. And because she had heard this, He that is without sin. let him first cast a stone at her, she expected to be punished by Him in whom sin could not be found. But He, who had driven back her adversaries with the tongue of justice, raising the eyes of clemency towards her, asked her, Hath no man condemned you? She answered, No man, Lord. And He said, Neither do I condemn you; by whom, perhaps, you feared to be condemned, because in me you have not found sin. Neither will I condemn you. What is this, O Lord? Do You therefore favor sins? Not so, evidently. Mark what follows: Go, henceforth sin no more. Therefore the Lord did also condemn, but condemned sins, not man. 

(In Ioannis evangelium tractatus XXXIII, 5 - 6, translation: