If I had such a category, this post should rightly fall under, “Things I Should Have Known A Long Time Ago But Didn’t”.
Recently I was reading an article by Father William Most called, “The Gifts of the Holy Spirit”, in the EWTN online document library. At one point in the article, Father Most tells us that the gifts of the Holy Spirit (of the sanctifying category) each perfect certain basic virtues. Four of them perfect intellectual virtues and the other three perfect virtues of the will and appetite.
Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel and Knowledge perfect intellectual virtues, while Fortitude, Piety and Fear of the Lord perfect virtues of the will and appetite.
- Wisdom perfects charity in order to judge divine things;
- Understanding gives an intuitive penetration into truth;
- Counsel perfects prudence;
- Knowledge perfects the virtue of hope;
- Fortitude perfects the virtue of fortitude (courage) in facing dangers;
- Piety perfects justice in giving to others that which is their due. This is especially true of giving God what is His due;
- Fear of the Lord perfects temperance in controlling disordered appetites.
As I mentioned in a recent post, I’ve been praying for seven virtues as part of my daily prayers since my consecration to Mary, but now I will begin praying for the gifts of the Holy Spirit as well. If the gifts perfect the virtues, then I hope and trust that this will bear fruit – the fruits of the Holy Spirit.