Virtue and Vice: How to Flip the Quest for Virtue in your Favor was the first workshop that I put together for Saint Paul of the Cross Monastery Retreat Center. I presented this workshop over the course of two years, at the retreat center and elsewhere, and was simply astounded at the positive feedback. I had hit on a topic that appealed to many people who were eager to learn more. So many attendees requested information about what was presented that it was during that time when I began to consider putting it all together in another medium.
Here under the heading of Virtue and Vice you’ll find some notes and information that was in that workshop: the highlights, so to speak. By clicking on the IMAGES below, you can access a PDF file which will go into much greater detail on some of the material.
Basic Terminology: Here you’ll find the general terminology that you should familiarize yourself with in order to better understand virtue, vice, and why it should matter to you whether you practice one more than the other. Consider this the warm-up for the rest of the material you’ll find here under this topic. What is in this segment will assist in your understanding of the rest of the material.
Identify your Primary Vice: Whether we are subject to one vice or several, there will be one that rears it’s ugly head more than the others. This is our primary vice and it is important to try to put a name on it if you want to root it out of your life. This guide will help you in the identification process. Even if you can’t identify the primary vice, when you learn more about them in general, you’ll get a sense of where to start.
Root Out Vice with Virtue: Here’s where we get into the meat of the matter. Take a little walk through the 7 Deadly Sins (Vices) and get familiar with what they involve and how they impact your life. Then, learn what virtues can help you root those vices out and leave them behind. If you had difficulty identifying your primary vice, this segment may assist in that process as you have the opportunity to read about the attributes of each vice.
Practical Tips: General information (not directed at any particular vice) intended to assist you in living a life of greater virtue. These are basic and easily incorporated into your day to day routine. They are a starting point! If one or more of the vices has really sunk its claws into your being, know that you can start with these tips but then probably will need to move on to more specific practices and prayer in order to achieve success.
Reference Guide: Need a daily reminder to let you know how to counter your vice with virtue? Print this file and tack it up on your fridge, your bulletin board, or stuff it in your purse, backpack, or wallet. From the Catholic Company, it is a handy go-to reference when you are in a pinch and don’t have time to really sit down and ponder the best way to deal with a situation!