Four Virtues, Seven Gifts and Twelve Fruits

Included in the first day of prayer of the Pentecost Novena, (as watched today on EWTN) were requests for “the Four Cardinal Virtues, Your Seven Gifts, Your Twelve Fruits.” What exactly are these…? Thank you, my friends.

Four cardinal virtues (i.e., human virtues, not the 3 theological virtues faith, hope, charity):

[LIST=1]
*]Prudence
*]Justice
*]Temperance
*]Fortitude
[/LIST]

12 fruits of the Holy Spirit

[LIST=1]
*]Charity
*]Joy
*]Peace
*]Patience
*]Benignity
*]Goodness
*]Long-suffering (patient suffering over an extended period)
*]Mildness
*]Faith
*]Modesty
*]Continency
*]Chastity
[/LIST]

Seven gifts of the Holy Spirit (acronym: Will uses kind compliments for pleasing friends)

[LIST=1]
*]Wisdom
*]Understanding
*]Knowledge
*]Counsel
*]Fortitude
*]Piety
*]Fear of The Lord (awe)
[/LIST]

I have a question. How does one get the Fruits of the Holy Spirit? Are they acquired by practicing virtue?

These come from prayer and the sacraments, and are perfected with practice.

1832 The fruits of the Spirit are perfections that the Holy Spirit forms in us as the first fruits of eternal glory. The tradition of the Church lists twelve of them: "charity, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, generosity, gentleness, faithfulness, modesty, self-control, chastity."112

You got it…the fruits are the results of the Holy Spirit’s giving us the graces – and us not blocking but cooperating with the Spirit’s power in us…Grace…both Sanctifying grace (God’s own nature) and the Spirit’s Actual graces (operative power to accomplish each and every task to fulfill the will of the Father for our every thought, word and action in our life on earth…cradle to grave). It all starts with the Three Theological Virtues…Faith, Hope and Charity…whose sole object is God…then the Four Cardinal Virtues…and seven Gifts…if we do our part in sacrificial love, humility and joyful obedience…our cooperation with the Holy Spirit…yields the Twelve Fruits. The Fruits are the “Truth Tellers” about what type of Christian we really are…no fruits or more likely inconsistent fruits…means we are not living the Theological and Cardinal Virtues…and are wasting or under utilizing the Seven Gifts. The barren fig tree episodes in Christ’s life and …are really quite ominous. So, an examination of conscience looking for the fruits or lack thereof…in our thoughts, words and actions…is a great help in our spiritual growth and journey to God.

Luke 6: 43-45
Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition (RSV-CE)
A Tree and Its Fruit

43 “For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit; 44 for each tree is known by its own fruit. For figs are not gathered from thorns, nor are grapes picked from a bramble bush. 45 The good man out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil man out of his evil treasure produces evil; for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.

For your consideration…hope its helpful.
Pax Christi

Goodness, that’s quite a list, Edward – I’d better get busy. Thanks so much…! :slight_smile:

One at a time for several weeks, with God.

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