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60. The Distinction of Moral Virtues

1. The moral virtues are habits of the intellectiveappetency called the will. Like all habits they are distinguishedby their respective objects.

2. First, moral virtues may be classified as those thatcontrol operations (for instance, justice) and those that controlthe passions (temperance). There is an overlapping in the exerciseof these two classes of moral virtues, as, for example, when a manacts justly with pleasure or joy, or performs his duty (justice)with courage.

3. In reference to operations there are various moralvirtues, such as religion and piety; yet all these are rooted inthe virtue of justice.

4. And likewise there are various moral virtues whichcontrol passions. Fortitude touches fear and courage; meeknessmoderates anger; temperance controls desire.

5. The moral virtues which regulate passions aredistinguished from one another by the distinct objects of thepassions involved inasmuch as these are subject to reason. Thus, wedistinguish fortitude, liberality, temperance, friendship,truthfulness, etc.

"Lord, take from me everything that hinders me from going to You. give me all that will lead me to You. Take me from myself and give me to Yourself."
St Nicholas Flue

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"Spiritual persons ought to be equally ready to experience sweetness and consolation in the things of God, or to suffer and keep their ground in drynesses of spirit and devotion, and for as long as God pleases, without their making any complaint about it."
St Philip Neri

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"God gives us some things, as the beginning of faith, even when we do not pray. Other things, such as perseverance, he has only provided for those who pray."
St Augustine

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