Your Faith

Pay attention to the fruit St. Rose Venerini

Feast Day: May 7

We have all no doubt heard that a tree can be known by its fruit. However, if we do not pay attention to the fruit, it will be more difficult to diagnose the health of the tree and to respond accordingly. The same is true of the life of holiness.

The life of holiness is a life in the Holy Spirit. We can do nothing to “produce” this fruit. When we are joyous, loving, peaceful, patient, kind, faithful, generous, gentle and in self-control, we trust that we are in communion with the Spirit, for it is only the Spirit who produces this fruit.

Is it really wrong to cheat on exams? Isn’t it just ‘helping’ each other?

Dear Fr. Joe: A lot of my friends cheat on their exams and don’t see anything wrong with it. They feel they are just helping each other out. I really believe this is wrong, but do I have an obligation to turn them in?

This is an important question that affects a lot of students at all levels of education. I even have folks talking to me about people cheating at work in different ways. It’s tough to know what to do in these situations. The good news is that our Catholic faith gives us some solid underlying principles that can help us.

The Adventure of Classical Morality

One of the most significant fault lines in Western culture opened up in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, when what we now know as the “modern” world separated itself from the classical and medieval world. The thinking of Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Kant, Newton, Jefferson, and many others represented a sea change in the way Western people looked at practically everything. In almost every telling of the story, this development is presented as an unmitigated good. I rather emphatically do not subscribe to this interpretation.

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