Choose a topic from Part 2B:

18. The Subject of Hope

1. Hope belongs to the order of appetency, not merely to the order of knowing. It is a striving for something. Now, it cannot be in the sense appetites, for hope as a theological virtue strives for the divine good, and the senses know nothing of this.Hence, hope belongs to the order of intellectual appetency, that is, it belongs to the will. Therefore, the proper subject of hope is the will. We recall, as we have done many times, that thesubject of anything is that in which the thing is properly said to reside, or by which the thing is possessed.

2. As we noticed elsewhere in our study, the virtue of hope is fulfilled in heaven. It is supplanted by the vision of God.When that which is hoped for is attained, the hope for it no longer exists. Hence, in heaven, hope does not exist.

3. The angels and the blessed souls in heaven have nothing further to hope for. But what of the damned? Do they hope for pardon and release? By no means. The damned know perfectly that they have actually and willfully rejected happiness, and they continue to reject it; hence, they do not hope for it. Hope exists only on earth and in purgatory. Man on earth hopes for heaven and the means to get there; souls in purgatory are sure of heaven, but they hope for their moment of being ready to enter it.

4. Our hope for God and heaven gives us assurance - nay, it gives us certainty - that we shall attain what we hope for if we do our part. The certainty of this hope rests on the unfailing goodness and mercy of God, and on his absolute fidelity to his promises.

"As the flesh is nourished by food, so is man supported by prayers"
St Augustine

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"Obedience is a short cut to perfection."
St Philip Neri

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"Try to turn your heart from the love of things visible and bring yourself to things invisible. For they who follow their own evil passions stain their consciences and lose the grace of God. "
Thomas á Kempis

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