Fortitude, Gift of

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The gift of the Holy Spirit that adds to acts of the infused virtues, the heroism that some circumstances of life demand. This gift moves the soul to intense acts in the areas of all the virtues, with no anxiety about results. Since it makes practical decisions, fortitude is directed by the gift of counsel. Together, both gifts move the soul to confident activities that are beyond the reach of the virtues alone. Fortitude achieves the fourth Beatitude, an insatiable desire for works of justice that the soul constantly satisfies with acts of virtue. The fruits of the gift are patience, a quiet self-containment in the presence of vexatious details, and longanimity, the ability to endure with composure even very long periods of suffering.

Bibliography: a. royo, The Theology of Christian Perfection, ed. and tr. j. aumann (Dubuque 1962) 474481. l. m. martÍnez, The Sanctifier, tr. m. aquinas (Paterson 1957) 135141, 232240, 284289.

[p. f. mulhern]