The Complete Guide for Catholic Parents on the Seven Sacred Virtues and the Seven Deadly Sins (2023)

Would you like to teach your children virtue? Don't you just want to teach your kids how to overcome addiction?

My wife and I started something with our kids a while ago. It's just a simple addition to family prayer.

Every vice is conquered by a certain virtue. Each week for seven weeks, the children choose a new virtue to pray and work on during the week. I explain the details below.

Here is the basic idea to help your children learn virtue. As you'll see in the infographic below, each virtue trumps a specific vice.

So let's deal with all of the following:

  • what is virtue
  • What are the 7 Deadly Sins? More explanations and bible verses for everyone.
  • What are the 7 Holy Virtues? More explanations and bible verses for everyone.

Infographic: Overcome the 7 Deadly Sins with the 7 Holy Virtues

Which virtues outweigh which vices? The opposite or corrective model of virtue

You can think of the Seven Virtues as a sword forged to defeat a specific vice. This is the "healing" or "opposite" model of the Seven Holy Virtues. Each specific virtue is the "cure" or "cure" or "antidote" that opposes each of the seven deadly sins.

Prudentius developed this model in 410 AD. in his allegorical poem Thepsychomachia("The Battle for the Soul"). Prudentius' scheme of virtues and vices was as follows:

Humility overcomes pride
Kindness conquers envy
Temperance defeats gluttony
Chastity conquers lust
Patience overcomes anger
Generosity trumps greed
Diligence overcomes laziness

Prayer practice for family and child to teach virtue and overcome vice

Here are the steps we followed for our Virtue Overcomes Vice prayer exercise with children:

  • We cut out rectangles from construction paper of different colors and write each of the above elements on each rectangle. For example, the red rectangle will say "Patience trumps anger" because anger appears to be a red color to us. Envy is naturally green. Watch out for the green-eyed monster! But what do you think is best. This is our prayer board:

Oops! I seem to have turned green with rage. Anger should be red, right?
  • We focus on a different sheet of paper each week.
  • Who takes the piece of paper? We tried to choose the child who best exemplified the virtue of the previous week. We will also try rotation, as some of our children may be too young to understand why they can never choose a virtue.
  • We ask Jesus every night to give us the grace of this week's virtue and use it to overcome this week's vice. We also took the opportunity to praise the children's demonstrations of virtue and to talk about how we could have done better or where we failed to practice virtue.
  • Sometimes we devote more than a week to a particular virtue and vice. (Or sometimes we just mess up the seven-week schedule.)
  • At Christmas we also have a nice Christmas tree. Slowly [patiently] we decorated it with homemade decorations:

Background on Virtue, the 7 Holy Virtues and the 7 Deadly Sins

First, we should probably think second of virtue. Which is?

what is virtue

Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is merciful, if anything is excellent, if anything is praiseworthy, think of these stuff. (Philippians 4:8)

according to thatCatechism of the Catholic Church, Paragraph 1803:

A virtue is a habitual and established disposition to do good. It allows a person not only to do good deeds, but to do his best. The virtuous man strives for the good with all his sensual and intellectual faculties; he pursues the good and chooses it in concrete actions.

According to St. Gregory of Nyssa, "The goal of a virtuous life is to become like God."[1]

(Video) "Seven Deadly Sins; Seven Lively Virtues" with Fr. Robert Barron

Virtue is a habit of the will


a habit of will

, after Aristotle and St. Thomas Aquinas.[2]

It takes time and practice to develop a good habit. Virtue takes practice.

For example, here is a quote from AristotleÉtica a Nicômaco:

... We become righteous just by acting,
moderated by moderate actions,
courageous through courageous deeds.[2]

Here's a video if you want to dig deeper into Aristotle's virtue:

Are children born bad?

Aquinas is also known for saying, and I'll paraphrase, "Children are born bad." [3] This might not sound very inspiring, but give me a second. virtues are habits. Habits take time to form. If you were just born, you haven't had much time to develop habits or virtues. Except, perhaps, patience!

If you have no virtue, you are malicious. Therefore, parents should teach our children good habits. We must teach virtue to our children.

So what are the seven deadly sins and the seven holy virtues?

What are the seven deadly sins (addictions)?

The seven deadly sins are Pride, Envy, Anger, Sloth, Greed, Gluttony and Lust.

Here is a list of some additional categories:

The seven capital sins

three spiritual sins
1. Pride (spiritual sin)
2. Envy (spiritual sin)
3. Anger (spiritual sin affected by the body)
four bodily sins
4. Accidia or laziness (bodily sin)
5. Greed or greed (physical sin)
6. Gluttony (physical sin)
7. Lust (physical sin)

The seven deadly sins are divided into spiritual and physical sins. Bodily sins are sins of the "body". Spiritual sins are sins of the "spirit". Pride, for example, takes place mainly in our minds. Lust, on the other hand, can start in our minds but be consumed by the body.

Here's a helpful infographic on the 7 Deadly Sins...

Infographic: 7 deadly sins

(Video) 7 Deadly Sins | Catholic Central

Did you know that the seven deadly sins are paired with the seven holy virtues? See below ...

Definitions and Bible verses for each of the seven deadly sins

You may be asked to define the seven deadly sins. There are good definitions here, not only for adults, but also for children. Defining "lust" for a child can be difficult, right?

Here are definitions for each of the seven deadly sins, plus Bible verses for each: (provided byall about god)

  • Lust – having a strong desire or need: “But I say to you, whoever looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5:28).
  • Gluttony – eating and drinking to excess: “For drunkards and gluttons make poor, and drowsiness clothes them in rags” (Proverbs 23:21).
  • Greed - Excessive or reprehensible greed: "They have lost all feeling and given themselves over to sensuality, committing all kinds of impurity, with a constant desire for more" (Ephesians 4:19).
  • Laziness - lack of activity or effort: not energetic or vigorous: "The bad way is blocked by thorns, but the right way is a highway" (Proverbs 15:19).
  • Anger: strong vengeful anger or indignation: "A soft answer turns away anger, but a harsh word stirs up anger" (Proverbs 15:1)
  • Envy: Painful or angry awareness of an advantage enjoyed by another, combined with a desire to have the same advantage: “Therefore, get rid of all malice and deceit, hypocrisy, envy and slander of every kind. Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that you may grow in your salvation” (1 Peter 2:1-2).
  • Pride - quality or state of pride - excessive self-esteem: "Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall" (Proverbs 16:18).

Memorize It: Practical Pneumonics for the Seven Deadly Sins

The seven deadly sins are likepeststhe soul! PESTES. Okay, not exactly "pests", but pretty close, right?

p pride
A - Ira/Ira
G - Gier
G - sugar
electronic envy
S - Failure

What are the seven sacred virtues?

Did you know that there are seven sacred virtues that go along with this?and defeatThe seven capital sins?

As above, the Seven Holy Virtues are divided into spiritual and physical virtues:

The Seven Sacred Virtues

Three spiritual (or theological) virtues
1. Fides (Fe)
2. Spes (Esperanza)
3. Caritas (charity)
The Four Cardinal (or Pagan) Virtues
4. Beware
5. Temperance
6. Fortaleza
7. Justice

Definitions and Bible verses for each of the seven holy virtues

You may be asked to define the seven sacred virtues. There are good definitions here, not only for adults, but also for children. It can sometimes be difficult to define a child's faith, although he probably understands it better than we do. They don't want to bother saying something like "faith" - oh,Do you know, is if you havezB.

Here are definitions for each of the seven deadly sins, plus Bible verses and quotes from theCatechism of the Catholic Church(CCC) for each:

Faith (CCC1814-1816):

Faith is the theological virtue by which we believe in God and believe in all that He has said and revealed to us and that the Holy Church proposes for our faith because it is the truth itself.

Through faith “man gives himself freely to God”[4]. Therefore, the believer strives to know and do God's will. "The just shall live by faith." Living faith “works by love” (Romans 1:17; Galatians 5:6).

The gift of faith remains with those who have not sinned against it[5]. But "faith without works is dead" (James 2:26): without hope and love, faith does not fully unite the believer to Christ and does not make him a living member of his body.

(Video) The Seven Capital Sins

The disciple of Christ must not only keep and live the faith, but also profess it, witness to it with confidence and spread it: "Everyone must be ready to confess Christ before men and to follow him on the way of the cross in the amidst the persecutions in which she is suffered, the Church never fails” [LG 42; cf. DH 14].

Service and creed are necessary for salvation: “Whoever confesses me before men, him I will also confess before my Father who is in heaven; but whoever denies me before men, I will also deny him before my Father who is in heaven.” in heaven” (Matthew 10:32-33).

Expect (CCC1817-1821)

Hope is the theological virtue by which we desire the kingdom of heaven and eternal life as our happiness, placing our trust in the promises of Christ, and trusting, not in our own strength, but in the aid of the grace of the Holy Spirit.

"Let us hold fast the confession of our hope, because he who promised is faithful" (Hebrews 10:23).

"The Holy Spirit...was poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Redeemer, so that by his grace we might be justified and made heirs of the hope of eternal life" (Titus 3:6-7).

The virtue of hope corresponds to the pursuit of happiness that God has placed in the heart of every human being. Hope gathers the hopes that inspire people's activities and purifies them to lead them to the Kingdom of Heaven.

Hope saves man from discouragement. Hope sustains him in moments of abandonment. Hope opens your heart in anticipation of eternal bliss. Animated by hope, he is saved from selfishness and led to the happiness that springs from charity.

charity (CCC1822-1829) - the "First Virtue"

"If I...have not charity," says Paul, "I am nothing." Whatever my privilege, ministry, or even virtue, "if I do not have charity, I gain nothing" (1 Corinthians 13:1-4).

Charity is superior to all virtues. It is the first of the theological virtues: “So remain faith, hope and love, these three; but the greatest is love” (1 Corinthians 13:13).

The practice of all virtues is encouraged and inspired by charity, which "unites all things in perfect harmony" (Colossians 3:14). Charity is the form of the virtues. Charity articulates and orders the virtues among themselves. Charity is the source and goal of his Christian practice. Charity sustains and purifies our human capacity to love, raising it to the supernatural perfection of divine love.

The practice of a moral life animated by love gives the Christian the spiritual freedom of the children of God. He no longer presents himself before God as a slave, in submissive fear, or as a mercenary in search of a wage, but as a son who responds to the love of the one who “first loved us” (cf. 1 Jn 4, 19 ). 🇧🇷 🇧🇷

When we turn away from evil for fear of punishment, we are in the position of slaves. If we chase the temptation of wages, . 🇧🇷 🇧🇷 We look like mercenaries. Finally, when we obey for our own good and for the love of those in charge. 🇧🇷 🇧🇷 we are in the position of children.[6]

The fruits of charity are joy, peace and mercy. Charity requires charity and fraternal correction. Charity is benevolence. Charity encourages reciprocity and remains unselfish and generous. Charity is friendship and fellowship.

Love itself is the accomplishment of all our works. There's the goal; therefore we run: we run to it, and when we reach it we shall find rest in it.[7]

Caution (CCC1806) - the "coachman of virtues"

Prudence is the virtue that possesses the practical reason to discern our true good in each situation and choose the adequate means to achieve it; “A wise man watches where he goes” (Proverbs 14:15). "Keep yourself well and sober for your prayers" (1 Peter 4:7). Prudence is "right reason in action", writes Saint Thomas Aquinas, following Aristotle[8].

Prudence must not be confused with timidity or fear, nor with duplicity or dissimulation.

take carethe conductor of virtues(the charioteer of virtues); guides the other virtues by establishing rule and measure. It is prudence that directly guides the judgment of conscience. The wise person determines and aligns his behavior according to this judgment. With the help of this virtue, we perfectly apply moral principles to specific cases and overcome doubts about what is good to do and what we should avoid.

temperance (CCC1809)

Temperance is the moral virtue that moderates the appeal of pleasures and balances the use of created goods. It ensures the mastery of the will over the instincts and keeps the desires within the bounds of what is honorable.

The temperate man guides the sensitive appetite towards the good and maintains sound discretion: "Do not follow your inclinations and your own strength, but walk in the desires of your heart" (Ecclesiasticus 5:2; cf. 37:27-31). . 🇧🇷 Temperance is often extolled in the Old Testament: "Do not follow your vile desires, but curb your lusts" (Ecclesiastes 18:30).

In the New Testament temperance is called "temperance" or "sobriety". We are to "live in this world with sobriety, righteousness, and godliness" (Titus 2:12).

Saint Augustine says the following about temperance and its relation to bravery, justice and prudence:

Living well is nothing more than loving God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your effort; it follows that love remains intact and incorruptible (through temperance). No misfortunes can disturb him (and this is strength). She only obeys [God] (and that is justice), and she is careful to discern things so as not to be caught off guard by deceit or cunning (and that is prudence).[9]

Templanza, Piero del Pollaiuolo

Fortaleza (CCC1808)

Bravery is the moral virtue that guarantees firmness in difficulties and perseverance in the pursuit of good. It strengthens the resolve to resist temptation and overcome obstacles in the moral life. The virtue of bravery allows one to overcome fear, even the fear of death, and face trials and persecution.

Strength is even willing to give and sacrifice life in defense of a just cause. "The Lord is my strength and my song" (Psalm 118:14). “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).

Justice (CCC1807) - the "virtue of religion"

Justice is the moral virtue that consists in the constant and firm will to give to God and to the neighbor what is theirs. Righteousness toward God is called the "virtue of religion." Justice towards people means respecting the rights of each individual and establishing a harmony in human relationships that promotes justice towards people and the common good.

The righteous, often mentioned in the Scriptures, is characterized by habitual right thinking and right conduct toward his fellowmen. “You shall not show partiality to the poor, nor respect the great, but judge your neighbor fairly” (Leviticus 19:15). “Master, deal justly and justly with your servants, knowing that you also have a Lord in heaven” (Colossians 4:1).

(Video) Franciscan University Presents: The Seven Deadly Sins

Footnotes: A Catholic Parent's Guide to Teaching the Virtues

[1]of the beatitudes, 1:PG 44, 1200D.
[2] cf. Aristotle,Nicomachean ethics1103b; Thomas von Aquin, DVC 1; ST IaIIae 49.1
[3] vg. Not here,theological sum, übers. Padres da Província Dominicana Inglesa (New York: Benziger Brothers, 1911-1925), IIIa, q. 68, Article 6.
[4]sword of god5
[5] cf. Council of Trent (1547):SD1545

[6]St. basil,Write backup., prol. 3:PG 31.896B.
[7]St. Augustine,and ep Yes.10,4:PL 35,2057.
[8] Thomas Aquinas, STh II-II,47,2.
[9]St. Augustine,For the preacher's morals1,25,46: PL 32,1330-1331.

(Video) The Seven Virtues: Cardinal & Theological Virtues


What are the 7 virtues in Catholicism? ›

The seven capital virtues, also known as contrary or remedial virtues, are those opposite the seven deadly sins. They are often enumerated as chastity, temperance, charity, diligence, patience, kindness, and humility.

What are the 7 cardinal sins and 7 holy virtues? ›

The seven deadly sins are pride, envy, gluttony, lust, anger, greed and sloth. The seven heavenly virtues are faith, hope, charity, fortitude, justice, temperance and prudence.

What are the 12 Catholic virtues? ›

These virtues include the three theological virtues of faith, hope, and charity (love) and the four cardinal virtues of prudence, fortitude, temperance, and justice.

What are the 7 virtues in order? ›

…can be overcome with the seven corresponding virtues of (1) humility, (2) charity, (3) chastity, (4) gratitude, (5) temperance, (6) patience, and (7) diligence.

What is the unforgivable sin Catholic? ›

20:1-15), blasphemy against the Holy Spirit must be a final refusal to repent, or final impenitence. Thus the official stand of the Catholic Church's, following Augustine and a whole host of subsequent moral theologians, is that the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is final impenitence.

What is the 8th heavenly virtues? ›

Scholars attribute the Eight Virtues to a line in the Sage Em- peror Guan's Book of Enlightenment: “It is through Filial Piety, Sibling Harmony, Dedication, Trustworthiness, Propriety, Sacrifice, Honour, and Sense of Shame that we become fully human.”


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