The Virtues of Purity and Modesty.. I'm not kidding!


I guess I can get away with creating this thread because I’m a religious! Some may probably be thinking “Is she serious… in this day and age?” But I am serious! Our young people are corrupted by what is out there on TV, peer pressure, colleges and universities. It is sad that these two virtues have been thrown in the back seat of mainstream America. Am I exaggerating? Do you agree? What are your thoughts? How can we witness to living a chaste and honorable life and still have fun with friends and live “normal?”


A nun in full habit does more to witness to the faith then she may know… Or, maybe she does…

I was on oblate to a Benedictine Community for 9 years. The sisters would go into town to shop for groceries, etc…

One shopping day, a 7 year old boy stopped to ask one of the sisters about Jesus… He had heard about Him, but didn’t know anything about Him… Sister stopped her shopping and spent about five minutes answering the boys questions, while mom look on from afar… What kind of seeds of faith were planted in that little boy? Maybe mom took him to church for the first time that Sunday??

If Sister would have been in street clothes, the boy never would have approached her…

God Bless all the Sisters of your order.


lol, I can definitely agree to this, as I am a young person myself. :o



Well, just toss that out the window, the world will *hate *you if you lead a holy and godly life.


Purity and modesty are beautiful virtues, and I wish that there was a way I could communicate how desirable having these virtues are to very young girls who want to be “pretty”, but end up getting sucked into the seductiveness of our culture. I don’t know how to communicate how laudable and how dignified these virtues are, though. I am afraid that maybe it is a perspective that only comes into full view with maturity.


Dear Sister

A big problem is that we’re confronted with too much pornographic and immodest things and this leads many into sin. People portayed as sex objects doesn’t help much either. A loss of the sense of sin and a missing understanding of the meaning and purpose of sex is a problem also.

God bless you:thumbsup::slight_smile:


They need to be instructed that they have a responsibility in modesty because when they present themselves in immodest fashion, they lead others to sin.


I disagree. A virtuous life is beautiful and attractive. A person who lives purity and modesty will also tend to be self-forgetful and focused on others. The people who encounter such a person will feel valued and welcomed and eventually discover the desirability of living these virtues.

The ones who are hated are those who exude bitterness and negativity.

And of course, I know you are referring to those of bad will who will hate anything good. Jesus was hated by the truly evil people He encountered, but He was also the most attractive and charismatic Person ever to walk the earth, and had the crowds following Him to prove it.

We should not judge our own virtue, then, by whether we are hated. That’s often a sign of failure.



I, for one, totally agree with you Sister Helena. Our young people (of which I am included) our being corrupted by various secular influences. It’s disgusting and I pray that one day those secular influences will not be so great. However, I suspect that it will only get worse as time goes on. :frowning:


Hi Sr. Helena :wave: I’m with you. I couldn’t agree more. Especially in regards to what is being “offered” as entertainment, these days… on television and in the movies. I would imagine that as a religious sister… you’re not often to be found in the local movie theater :wink: . You’re not missing anything. :nope:

As far as peer pressure, college and universities… well, I’m sure glad that I’m NOT college age. This brings to mind the terrible (but highly admirable and responsible) decision that 40 of the Notre Dame University Seniors were recently forced to make. After years of hard work, they had to make the sad decision to boycott their own Commencement Ceremony. Although I greatly admired their courage… I was sad for them.

No, I personally do not believe this to be an exaggeration. I think it is absolutely correct. But I do hold out hope for the future of our younger generations (at least, those in the Catholic Church); the attendance for World Youth Day are a very good indicator of this. I sort of wish that World Youth Days were annual, instead of every few years. (Although I do realize this would be a huge and costly undertaking for those who organize them).

Maybe our local parishes/dioceses ought to hold annual “mini” Youth Day celebrations? To follow along the same formats as the World Youth Days (with Public Eucharistic processions and adoration; “Virtue” speakers; Mass with the Bishop… etc.) :gopray:


I am more optimistic in the thought that the world HUNGERS for the good and the beautiful. The world was originally created to be good, wasn’t it? Now, the “spirit of the world” is always doing battle with what is good. But should we give in to what it pulls us to do? Saints and sinners are always attracted to anything good, whatever is beautiful in people, nature, relationships. This is part of us. But the problem is, we look for these in all the wrong places! The life of virtues is difficult, I agree, but beautiful. Young people look for it and hunger for it but get short-changed by what they see in the mainstream. To all the young out there, not all that glitters is gold! Not all that FEELS good is good! Trying to distinguish what is real takes study, prayer and courage to do the right thing despite pressure from friends and “hatred” of the world.


To toss in my 2 cents:

Cent #1: Business think they can make more money from people not being pure and modest.

Cent #2: Does impurity and immodesty bring so much health and sheer happiness?

So long as society believes in Cent #1 and persuades people to believe the answer to Cent #2 is “Yes”, then the world won’t change.


No, the world may not change. It’s too big for us to dream of changing the world. But we can always start with ourselves.


I have yet to find someone who hates Mother Theresa…


I have to disagree. Look how much change 12 unlearned fisherman from the Middle East caused.


At this point in our world we are not about to change the “soft porn” our young people see on TV. I strongly think that the virtues of purity and modesty are only taught in one place…the home. No matter what is on TV or in the print media…it can still be taught in the home. I have seen it done. That is where it is NOT being taught. We as a Church are not emphasizing enought the impact of the Domestic Church…positive and negative.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church talks about the Domestic Church within the Sacrament of Matrimony.


1656 In our own time, in a world often alien and even hostile to faith, believing families are of primary importance as centers of living, radiant faith. For this reason the Second Vatican Council, using an ancient expression, calls the family the Ecclesia domestica.168 It is in the bosom of the family that parents are "by word and example . . . the first heralds of the faith with regard to their children. They should encourage them in the vocation which is proper to each child, fostering with special care any religious vocation."169

1657 It is here that the father of the family, the mother, children, and all members of the family exercise the priesthood of the baptized in a privileged way "by the reception of the sacraments, prayer and thanksgiving, the witness of a holy life, and self-denial and active charity."170** Thus the home is the first school of Christian life and "a school for human enrichment.**"171 Here one learns endurance and the joy of work, fraternal love, generous - even repeated - forgiveness, and above all divine worship in prayer and the offering of one’s life.


The 12 unlearned fishermen from the Middle East changed people’s hearts and minds, not the world as we know it. The struggle of the good and the bad continues and will continue until the Lord comes again in glory.


I wholeheartedly agree with you!


It is about reclaiming the culture for values many have lost–like purity and modesty. We can’t make others virtuous, but our example can change the conditions and make it more acceptable.

We didn’t get into this situation over night. Our culture was gradually eroded bit by bit. Years ago people said how silly of those bishops who objected to a movie in which there was divorce! Then it was showing a little more skin. Then a little more. Then it was cohabitation. Making out on screen, etc, etc. Each little change desensitized people and opened the door for the next step.

So to “reverse engineer” this, we’d need to start taking little steps back toward modesty and purity. Religious who wear habits and model such behavior is one step. Abstinence programs in high school… parents pushing back against sex education that tramples on their values, individuals choosing to forego sex before marriage, people studying Theology of the Body… Each of these by itself is a small thing and often gets a lot of resistance and there will be set backs, but together these will help to change the culture though it will take a long time and we may not be around to see the results.



I am a young adult that has been exposed to so much filth and perversity (just from Network TV alone, I had cable for a short time in my life), that I don’t watch TV anymore, unless I know something of educational or moral value will be on, which is RARE!

When St. Pio was alive, he advised his spiritual children not to watch television, and back then, TV programming was like Barney and Friends 24 hours a day, compared to now.

If you truly want to grow virtuous, you’ll avoid societal evils as much as you possibly can; and that includes sinful TV programming, and radio content.

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