The cardinal virtues are the four principal moral virtues. The English word cardinal comes from the Latin word cardo, which means "hinge." All other virtues hinge on these four: prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance.
Plato first discussed the cardinal virtues in the Republic, and they entered into Christian teaching by way of Plato's disciple Aristotle. Unlike the theological virtues, which are the gifts of God through grace, the four cardinal virtues can be practiced by anyone; thus, they represent the foundation of natural morality. The latest article from the Catechetical Office of the Diocese of La Crosse offers a look at one of the Cardinal Virtues:
What is Prudence?
Right judgment is essential for making good decisions in everyday life. Right judgment is referred to as prudence. Prudence is a virtue that when developed as a good habit is directed toward right and true behavior. Developing consistently good habits or virtues help to keep our desires always directed in ways that are healthy for us and for our relationships. Let’s take a closer look.
The virtue of prudence is about making right decisions from a purely natural perspective. It assists people to arrange their lives and activities in order to achieve the goal of a happy life. Prudence is basically common sense in sound judgment regarding practical matters. It is naturally prudent to look both ways before crossing the street.
Much like physical exercise or daily practice of a musical instrument, growing in the virtue of prudence requires consistent effort and selfmastery, and most importantly God’s help through prayer. Making a prudent decision involves correct knowledge about things to be done or that ought to be avoided by distinguishing between what is right and what is wrong. Choosing wisely also involves taking good counsel from others whose moral judgment is generally sound.
We can grow in the virtue of prudence through sanctifying grace received in the Sacraments, and thus prudence can take on a supernatural dimension. Prudence at this deeper level is about making right decisions in accordance with God’s will, which is good and the very best for us, benefiting us now and eternally. Ongoing study of our Catholic Faith as an adult provides the foundation for applying good moral principles to particular cases, assisting us to know what to seek and what to avoid.
In making prudent decisions, we order our activities, desires, resources, and behavior in accordance with the Gospel so that we may come to eternal life. We must use supernatural prudence and courage when we are faced with evil. We can do many things that are imprudent from a worldly perspective but which are prudent for eternal life. This is evident with the martyrs who are celebrated for their living witness of supernatural prudence as they surrendered their life for Jesus’ sake.
Why is the virtue of prudence important? In practicing the virtue, we are better able to see the right thing to do and to choose the right means for achieving it. Further, prudence helps us to see what aids our salvation, what hinders our progress and what is necessary in order to seek the common good for all. Supernatural prudence may involve a certain degree of discomfort because we are often afraid of the consequences of opposition to the prevailing point of view.
By growing in God’s grace through daily prayer and reception of the Sacraments, we are more open to the guidance of the Holy Spirit for prudential decision making. Let us seek to practice this virtue so that we can intentionally make good judgments according to God’s plan which will always make for a joyfilled life.
Wisconsin Makes School More Affordable:
The Following is taken from State Senator Luther Olsen's Web Page:
Private School Tuition Tax Break:
One of the biggest decisions parents make is where to send their children to school. For some families, the choice is simple; the local public school is the best place for them. It might even be the same school the parents went to when they were young. Some families are looking for something different though, which might mean a private school, a public school in another district or a virtual charter school. Making the choice to send your children to private school just got a little more affordable, under a new tax deduction included in the recently approved state budget.
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Building the Future... Preserving the Past
FROM THE PRINCIPAL'S OFFICE
Thank you for your interest in Prairie Catholic Schools. St. Gabriel’s campus is our elementary school, and encompasses grades Pre-K though 4th, and St. John’s campus is our middle school which entails grades 5th through 8th. Additionally, on-site daycare is available at the St. Gabriel’s campus.
We know that choosing the right education for your child is one of the most important decisions you face. The entire staff at Prairie Catholic appreciates the fact that you are willing to consider our school, and wish you to know that this is greatly appreciated. The education of our youth is an honor and a great responsibility that we do not take lightly.
A Catholic school offers a unique environment with very special opportunities for its students to grow spiritually. Prairie Catholic is no different. Our setting allows educators to share their faith and values while educating their students, your children. We are committed to helping children grow in faith and love and to display respect and fellowship. Prairie Catholic does not discriminate based on faith and includes many non-Catholic families. These families appreciate our caring, student-centered environment that teaches children to follow Christ’s command to love one another and treat others with respect.
Prairie Catholic provides a strong academic curriculum and a safe learning environment for students to reach their greatest potential. We support each child by recognizing his or her own talents and instilling an appreciation for the gifts of others. This atmosphere fosters a mutual respect for one another.
We encourage, and are committed to, a cooperative partnership between family and school. We seek to work with you as parents, in helping your child become the best they can be. We believe in the mutual relationship of school supporting family and family supporting school.
At Prairie Catholic, we are positive people – learning, loving and living our faith. We aspire to create a place where your child is safe, happy and knows they are special.
We would love to discuss further the opportunities we can offer your child. Please call us for a personal tour at:
(608) 326-8624 (St. Gabriel’s)
(608) 326-4400 (St. John’s)
Principal, Prairie Catholic Schools
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