Courage or fortitude?.Which one to pick and which one is which?

Courage is one of those things shown in such an overly romanticized way from kids cartoons to Hollywood blockbusters.There has to be more to fortitude than a more fancy sounding version of courage,isn’t there?.

In the third sorrowful mystery of the rosary, we meditate upon the crowning of thorns. The fruit of this mystery is courage–the courage to be a Christian even when we are being mocked.

Fortitude as a gift of the Holy Spirit goes beyond courage in that it enables us to go so far as to die for our Faith if called to do so.

You’re right, fortitude is not exactly what Hollywood calls “courage”.

Here are a couple quotes from this page:

“St. Thomas Aquinas ranked fortitude as the third of the cardinal virtues, because it serves prudence and justice, the higher virtues. Fortitude is the virtue that allows us to overcome fear and to remain steady in our will in the face of obstacles. Prudence and justice are the virtues through which we decide what needs to be done; fortitude gives us the strength to do it.”

“Fortitude is not foolhardiness or rashness, “rushing in where angels fear to tread.” Indeed, part of the virtue of fortitude, as Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J., notes in his Modern Catholic Dictionary, is the “curbing of recklessness.” Putting our bodies or lives in danger when it is not necessary is not fortitude but foolishness.”

All virtues are complimentary and synergistic to one another in acquiring a holy life, just as all vices are complimentary and synergistic to one another in acquiring an unholy life. A person that permits a single minor vice makes themselves more pliable to all others, and vice versa. There are no spiritual ills or fruits exist in isolation to one another.

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