Wisdom is hard to come by. It requires practicing the three Theological Virtues of Faith, Hope, and Love. This week we dive into these virtues as we join Jesus in his ministry, healing the hemorrhaging woman and raising a girl from the dead. These are touching stories that we can all relate to, and they show us Jesus’ humanity and his divinity, something the Apostles struggled with, and we still have trouble understanding. We explore these concepts, these virtues, and wisdom, and have a fun family activity to help us remember these things throughout the week.
Faith, Hope, and Love
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Catechesis At Home – Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year B
Faith, Hope, and Love
DISCUSSION – Wisdom and the Theological Virtues
Wisdom is a gift of the Holy Spirit and also the title of one of the books of the Old Testament. The spiritual gift of Wisdom “enables one to know the purpose and plan of God” (CCC Glossary). Today’s first reading gives us some of this purpose – God created man to be imperishable, in His own image. That is God’s plan for us, but we messed it up and so in the fullness of time, He sent His Son, Jesus, to save us and bring us to eternal life.
Jesus’ divinity is showcased in the Gospel today as he heals a woman and raises a girl from death. The miracles that Jesus does are by His own power that comes from His divine nature. The apostles and disciples did not understand this about Jesus. They could not comprehend the duality of His natures – His humanity and His divinity. We struggle to understand it, too, even though we have 2000 years of Magisterial teaching to help us. Jesus is both fully human and fully divine. He did not put aside His divinity when He became incarnate. He also is not simply “pretending” to be human. He is flesh and blood, has emotions, and feels pain and pleasure. We can relate to Him on this level.
Jesus calls us to relate to Him on the divine level as well. He calls us to FAITH, like the woman with the hemorrhage. She is healed because of her faith. Jesus did not DO anything to heal her. She came to Him, she touched Him, she believed in Him. God LOVES us so much and has our best in mind for us. He does not want us to suffer or grieve. But, as we live on earth, these things will happen. In today’s Gospel, Jesus gives us a glimpse of what is in store for us in heaven – full health and life. Through these miracles we have HOPE. These are the three Theological virtues – Faith, Hope, and Love. This week let’s see how we can build up these virtues in our lives, so we can appreciate and accept the gift of Wisdom and see the purpose God has for our lives.
ACTIVITY – Gaining Wisdom through Faith, Hoe, and Love
The Catechism of the Catholic Church discusses and defines each of the virtues in paragraphs 1812-1829. For simplicity’s sake here are basic definitions:
Faith – Theological virtue by which we believe in God and believe all He has said and revealed to us. “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things unseen.” (Hebrews 11:1)
Hope – Theological virtue by which we desire the Kingdom of Heaven and eternal life as our happiness, placing our trust in Christ’s promises. “Let us hold fast to the confession of our hope without wavering, or He who promised is faithful.” (Hebrews 10:23)
Love (Charity) – Theological virtue by which we love God above all things for His own sake and our neighbor as ourselves for the love of God. “As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you. Abide in my Love.” (John 15:9)
- This week discuss these virtues with your family. Talk about what it means to live the virtues of Faith, Hope, and Love. Be concrete, these virtues are for living, not simply contemplating. How do you live a faithful life? How do you show others you have hope in God’s promises? How do you love one another?
- Divide your family into three groups, or do this individually:
- Each group takes a virtue and using whatever art/craft supplies you have on hand, draws symbols representing the virtue. Then have each group show the others what they drew and explain why they chose those symbols to represent the virtue.
- Put the finished products on the fridge, the kitchen table, or next to the television as a regular reminder of these three theological virtues that we are all working on together.
- Pray the Acts of Faith, Hope and Love
Other Wisdom. Faith, Hope, and Love-related items of interest on our site:
What were some of the symbols your family made for the virtues? Why did they choose those?
by Beth Cowles, MACE
HOO™ Co-Founder and Director of Faith Formation | Lead Catechist