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16. Those Who Have the Virtue of Penance

1. As a man is curable by reason of his soundhealth, even though he never had a disease, so a man may have thevirtue of penance, even though he has never sinned actually. Thevirtue of penance is infused by God with the other supernaturalvirtues.

2. The virtue of penance is a part of justice,and justice will remain in the soul in heaven. Hence the virtue ofpenance also will remain in the soul. But in heaven the act of thevirtue of penance will not be grief for sin, but joyousthanksgiving to God for his mercy in pardoning sin.

3. There can be no virtue of penance in the angels, forthe good angels have not committed sin, nor are they capable now ofcommitting it. And the evil angels are fixed and determined intheir sinful will, and cannot be repentant.

"The supreme perfection of man in this life is to be so united to God that all his soul with all its faculties and powers are so gathered into the Lord God that he becomes one spirit with him, and remembers nothing except God, is aware of and recognises nothing but God, but with all his desires unified by the joy of love, he rests contentedly in the enjoyment of his Maker alone."
St Albert the Great

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"God commands not impossibilities, but by commanding he suggests to you to do what you can, to ask for what is beyond your strength; and he helps you, that you may be able."
St Augustine

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

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