This last week Fr. Meconi spent part of the first night of the parish mission talking about the Seven Deadly (or Corporal) Sins. I’ve also heard of a few priests are preaching about these throughout each Sunday in Lent this year. I thought it would be a good topic to spend a few minutes to consider as we come to the last two weeks of Lent, to recognize some of the vices we might be facing in our lives, and consider how we need to address them.
The Seven Deadly Sins are Pride, Envy, Wrath (Anger), Sloth, Avarice (Greed), Gluttony, and Lust. Chances are that if we spend a little time reflecting on these, we can recognize them in our lives, and also which one or two of them are our biggest problem. But we know that we don’t want to stop there. Yes, we first need to recognize our vices and our sins, ask for God’s forgiveness, but then if we are truly sorry for them we need to try and change them. If we recognize them not only as sins but actually as vices, habits that have built up in our lives that are sinful and lead us deeper into sin, we hopefully also realize that what we need to do is to address these vices, and build up virtues.
Opposed to the Seven Deadly Sins there have been virtues that have been proposed as remedies for each vice. Consider the following list:
VICE – VIRTUE
Pride – Humility
Envy – Kindness
Wrath – Patience
Sloth – Diligence
Greed – Liberality (Generosity)
Gluttony – Abstinence
Lust – Chastity
I realize it isn’t as easy as saying I’m too prideful so I will now be humble, but it does give us some direction, areas to be aware of, maybe some examples of what we need to start doing. We can look at specific actions in our life that we have identified as sinful in one of these ways, and consider how I might have lived that out with the virtue instead. And now that we have an idea of what we need to do we have a little better chance at actually doing it.
As we come towards the end of Lent maybe we can not only be recognizing the things we need to change, but also that person we wish to be changing into this Easter.