The major goal during the first stage of the spiritual life of a Catholic man as a Catholic Son is to bring a man’s selfish thoughts and acts under control and to live his life as commanded by the Blessed Trinity so that he can resist the constant attacks and temptations of Satan and be an obedient and holy Catholic Son.
There are 7 Major Habits of Catholic Sons (Major Habits 1-7 of Catholic Manhood) and 24 smaller Habits which can help a man grow in his vocation as a Catholic Son. The more vigorously a man meditates upon and practices these habits the more he will accelerate his spiritual ascent, particularly if he focuses upon habits which are holding him back in his spiritual life. To help a man assess his spiritual progress as a Catholic Son, for each of the 7 Major Habits of a Catholic Son there are a series of questions which can help a man focus upon small steps to help him grow in holiness (see below: Assessing the spiritual progress of a Catholic Son).
A word of encouragement: The pursuit of Sainthood is the highest and most challenging thing any man can aspire to do. The habits and assessment may be intimidating and discouraging, for almost every man struggles with sin and it can be overwhelming to see how far a man has to go in the spiritual life. God, the Almighty Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, is thrilled and delighted when you desire to draw closer to the Blessed Trinity and aspire to grow in holiness. God loves you and will help make you a saint; all you need to do is rely on God and consistently do your best and God will give you the grace to become a saint. It will not be easy, but Jesus gave us the Cross and will help you bear the burden; and He gave us His Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary. Holy Mother of God, pray for us.
The 7 Habits of Catholic Sons
Major Habit 1 – Make Union with God your Ultimate Purpose
Make Union with God your Ultimate Purpose, giving you the desire to avoid Hell and to seek the Beatific Vision of Heaven and to draw closer to God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit every single day of your life.
Habit 1 – Become an adopted son of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit through the Sacrament of Baptism and the Sacrament of Confirmation
Become an adopted son of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit through the Sacrament of Baptism and the Sacrament of Confirmation, to avoid Hell and pursue Heaven by confirming your identity as an adopted son of the Father and your aspiration of becoming a saint as your ultimate purpose in life.
Habit 2 – Engage in Daily Deep Prayer
Engage in daily deep prayer with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit (morning, during the day, at night; Rosary, Indulged Prayers, Evening Examine) with special emphasis on seeking the great blessing of Indulgences as guided by the Church.
Habit 3 – Study the Life of Jesus Christ in Scripture Daily
Study the Life of Jesus Christ in Scripture Daily, entering into the daily discipline of Lectio Divina with a special emphasis on the Gospels of Jesus Christ to understand Salvation History, to better know, love and serve Jesus Christ, and to model your entire life upon Him.
Habit 4 – Repent and Receive the Sacrament of Penance
Repent and Receive the Sacrament of Penance, building a mindset of continual repentance by a deliberate daily rejection of Satan and Sin, by a daily disciplined Examination of Conscience and by regular reception of the Sacrament of Penance.
Habit 5 – Receive and Adore the Sacrament of the Eucharist Daily/Weekly
Receive and Adore the Sacrament of the Eucharist Daily/Weekly in a worthy manner (in a State of Grace) and pray for the Son of God to give you a profound hunger for the Eucharist so you can receive the fullness of Grace of the Eucharist.
Habit 6 – Seek and receive the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit
Seek and receive the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit by recognizing your desperate need for the Spirit’s help to remain free of mortal sin, battle against Vice, build heroic Virtue and make many holy acts.
Major Habit 2 – Be Continually Formed in the Catholic Church
Be Continually Formed in the Catholic Church by consistent study of the faith, accepting, and conforming your entire life upon the wisdom of the Church.
Habit 7 – Study the Dogma of the Catholic Church
Study the Dogma of the Catholic Church by reading and being taught about the Catechism of the Catholic Church and by continually seeking inspiration and wisdom from the Catechism to live a more holy life and to be prepared to defend the Church.
Habit 8 – Study the Lives of the Saints
Study the Lives of the Saints to learn by their example of heroic purpose and spiritual life so that you can seek to imitate their proven path to Heaven.
Habit 9 – Study under the guidance of trusted Catechists
Study under the guidance of trusted Catechists, including your parish priest and deacon, to continue to grow in understanding of the faith through the reading of Church teachings (Encyclicals, Apostolic Exhortations), the reading of great Catholic books, and participating in bible studies, classes, retreats and parish missions.
Major Habit 3 – Live a Rich Liturgical Life
Live a Rich Liturgical Life by organizing your life around the rhythms (daily, weekly, monthly, seasonally, annually) of the Church and building deep communion with the Saints and Angels.
Habit 10 – Center your life upon the Liturgy
Center your life upon the Liturgy, actively engaging in the daily, weekly, seasonal and annual Liturgy of the Holy Catholic Church.
Habit 11 – Consecrate yourself to the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph
Consecrate yourself to the Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph and continually to seek their intercession for you and your family and friends.
Habit 12 – Seek the Intercession of Angels
Seek the Intercession of Angels, with special emphasis on seeking practical daily help and protection from St. Michael and your Guardian Angel against the daily attacks of Satan and demons.
Habit 13 – Be drawn ever-deeper into the Communion of Saints
Be drawn ever-deeper into the Communion of Saints, honoring the Feast days and Memorials of the Saints, developing special devotion to your patron Saint(s) and continually seeking indulgences for the faithfully departed in Purgatory.
Major Habit 4 – Battle against Sin and Vice
Battle against Sin and Vice by continual examination of your well-formed conscience, holding yourself accountable to shun Sin, mortify your appetites, and discipline and care for your physical body.
Habit 14 – Recognize sin and make deliberate plans to stop sinning
Recognize sin and make deliberate plans to stop sinning, identifying your most prevalent/pressing sins and the vices that support them, making deliberate commitments to systematically resist sin including a firm resolve to avoid any and all of the near occasions of sin.
Habit 15 – Fast and Abstain weekly
Fast and Abstain weekly, gaining freedom and breaking the appetites which enslave you, by keeping obligations for weekly and seasonal fasting and voluntarily abstaining from food, drink and evil and addicting media sources.
Habit 16 – Discipline and care for your Body
Discipline and care for your Body in reparation for your sins and to be an excellent and grateful steward of the body, the Temple of the indwelling God, by regularly exercising, eating a healthy and nutritious diet, seeking appropriate health care, and receiving the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick when ill.
Major Habit 5 – Strive to Grow in Heroic Virtue
Strive to Grow in Heroic Virtue by building the virtues you most need to overcome your vices and to systematically grow in the Theological and Cardinal Virtues and to build the virtuous talents God has given you.
Habit 17 – Pursue a deliberate plan to grow your most needed Virtues
Pursue a deliberate plan to grow your most needed Virtues, focusing on those virtues needed to battle against your mortal sins.
Habit 18 – Daily Practice the Theological Virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity
Daily Practice the Theological Virtues of Faith, Hope and Charityand break the Vices of Disbelief/Lukewarmness, Doubt and Hatred.
Habit 19 – Systematically study and practice the Cardinal Virtues of Prudence, Justice, Fortitude and Temperance
Systematically study and practice the Cardinal Virtues of Prudence, Justice, Fortitude and Temperance and their many sub-virtues to break the Vices of Imprudence, Injustice, Cowardice and Gluttony.
Major Habit 6 – Perform Works of Mercy
Perform Works of Mercy to serve those in need and build the Church so you might be found worthy of being admitted into the Kingdom of Heaven.
Habit 20 – Be an excellent steward of God’s gifts to support yourself and the Church
Be an excellent steward of God’s gifts to support yourself and the Church so you diligently develop and use the time, talent and treasure God has bestowed upon you to build your worldly vocation and to take on the special and heroic mission God has for you to build His Church.
Habit 21 – Perform the Corporal Works of Mercy
Perform the Corporal Works of Mercy by generous financial giving to the Church and volunteering to serve the many ministries of the Church to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, welcome the stranger and homeless, visit the sick, visit the imprisoned, and bury the dead.
Habit 22 – Perform the Spiritual Works of Mercy
Perform the Spiritual Works of Mercy through daily interactions with others and volunteering in the many ministries of the Church to instruct the ignorant, counsel the doubtful, admonish the sinners, bear patiently with those who wrong you, forgive offenses, comfort the afflicted, pray for the living and seek Indulgences for the dead.
Major Habit 7 – Build a Band of Catholic Brothers
Build a Band of Catholic Brothers, forming deep brotherhood with a small and close group of brothers, engaging priests and deacons, and building relationships with and mentoring a broader Catholic men in your parish.
Habit 23 – Seek Deep Brotherhood
Seek Deep Brotherhood with a small group of 4-7 men who commit to engage in the Spiritual Combat individually and to help each other battle against sin, grow in personal holiness, and meet on a regular basis.
Habit 24 – Grow Parish Fraternity
Grow Parish Fraternity by taking personal initiative to befriend priests and deacons, building friendships with other men in your parish, participating in the Knights of Columbus and other Catholic men’s groups, and being mentored by and mentoring other men.
Assessing the spiritual progress of a Catholic Son
To help you more fully assess your spiritual progress as a Catholic Son when you are ready to do so, the following section provides a series of questions which can help you better understand the faith and hold yourself accountable. These questions are based on the habits of a Catholic Son and break down the habits into smaller, easier to tackle thoughts and actions so you can identify small practical steps to grow in your spiritual life as a Catholic Son.
Major Habit 1 – Make Union with God your ultimate purpose
Key question: Am I striving to seek union with God my highest purpose in my life (Drawing closer to the Almighty Father, Son and Holy Spirit?
Have I received the Sacrament of Baptism and the Sacrament of Confirmation?
Do I avoid The Five Sins against God’s love (“Short Summary of Catholic Doctrine and Teaching”, p ___)?
Do I avoid the Sins against the Spirit (“Short Summary of Catholic Doctrine and Teaching”, p ___)?
Do I vigorously uphold The 1st Commandment and seek to love God above all else and to battle against committing idolatry in any form (putting faith in the false gods of money, government, political parties, ideologies, personalities, pagan beliefs and rituals, material things, career/work, etc.)?
Do I always uphold The 2nd Commandment by never taking the Lord’s Name in vain or mocking, joking, or demeaning God and His Holy Catholic Church in any way?
Do I attend a Catholic parish which celebrates the Sacrament of the Eucharist with the greatest of reverence, vigorously upholds the fullness of Truth in of Christ’s Holy Catholic Church and avoids supporting any objectively sinful ideas or behaviors which opposes the Church’s teaching?
Have I firmly repented from my past sins and given myself completely to God and His Holy Catholic Church, even to the point of being willing to become a martyr in defense of the Faith?
Do I periodically (at least once a year) renew my sacred vows of the Sacrament of Baptism so I can recall and strive to live out my vocation as an adopted son of God?
Do I put the truth of my Catholic identity as an adopted son of God above all other lesser identities (demographic, political, vocation, etc.)?
Do I have a firm understanding and belief in The Four Last Things (Death, Judgment, Heaven and Hell) and do I meditate upon the horrors of Hell and the Beatific Vision of God in Heaven on a regular basis?
Do I pray each day to the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit to offer my soul-deep gratitude for God’s blessings, to seek God’s wisdom and petition God’s help for me, my loved ones and others?
Do I have a regular prayer routine that includes morning prayer, prayer during the day (the Angelus, prayer before and after meals) and a nightly Examination of Conscience (“Drawing Close to God in Prayer” p ___)?
Am I cultivating deep and personal relationships with each Person of the Trinity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit?
Do I pray the Rosary daily or frequently (“Prayer the Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary”, p ___)?
Do I use a Catholic book of prayers and devotions that I use on a daily basis to help me add structure and depth to my prayer life (“Drawing closer to God in Prayer” p ___)?
Do I regularly pray to receive grants of Indulgences by the Church which can alleviate the suffering of those in Purgatory now, and my own suffering in Purgatory in the future?
Do I practice a well-rounded types of prayers that include Vocal Prayer (formal prayers of the Church), Meditative Prayer (praying in conversation with God) and Contemplative Prayer (spending time in silent awe of God)?
Do I have a strong and extensive knowledge of the Life of Jesus Christ from the Gospels and His teachings to the point that I can inspire and lead others to seek Him?
Do I read the Bible daily and have a regular discipline of Lectio Divina (“Meditating upon Scripture” p ___)?
Have I developed a deep understanding of the “story” and the books of the Bible to the point where I can generally explain it to others?
Do I continually seek to memorize key Scripture passages and can I recall and voice the teachings of Christ spontaneously to encourage, admonish, and teach others about Jesus?
Do I regularly do an in-depth Examination of Conscience using a trusted and rigorous Catholic guide based on The 10 Commandments, The 7 Deadly Sins, the Virtues, the Beatitudes and the duties of my vocation to confront my Mortal and Venial Sins in preparation for receiving the Sacrament of Penance (“Repenting and Receiving the Sacrament of Penance” p ___)?
Do I have deep contrition for my sins and do I have an iron resolve to not repeat the sins of the past and avoid every and all near occasions of sin?
Do I receive the Sacrament of Penance as soon as humanly possible when I fall into mortal sin and at least once a month?
Do I joyfully keep my holy obligation to participate in the Sunday Mass and all other days of holy obligation?
Do I go beyond obligations and seek to regularly attend Mass on weekdays and other non-obligatory Feast Days and Memorials of the Saints?
Am I always in a State of Grace when I receive the Eucharist or refrain from presenting myself in the Mass for the Eucharist to avoid God’s punishment for unworthy reception of the Eucharist (I Cor. 11:27-30)?
Do I diligently prepare myself before Mass to receive the Body and Blood of Christ (pre-read the day’s Scripture, list of sacrifices and petitions I will offer in the Mass, attire that honors Jesus Christ, preparatory prayers, etc.)?
Do I strive to stay focused on Christ and fully engaged during every Mass (“Receiving the Sacrament of the Eucharist” p ___)?
Do my behaviors and gestures in the Mass demonstrate my awe of the Eucharist and encourage others to be reverent?
Do I spend a Holy Hour in Adoration of the Eucharist or visit a Tabernacle in a parish to pray before the Eucharist each week (“Adoring Jesus Christ in the Eucharist” p ___)?
Do I understand the great power of the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit to give me supernatural power to battle against Sin and Vice and grow in Virtue (“Receiving the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit” p ___)?
Do I pray each day for an out-pouring of the Holy Spirit to help me grow in holiness?
Have I prayerfully discerned if God is calling me to closer union with Him through the Sacrament of Holy Orders as a priest or deacon or as religious brother?
Major Habit 2 – Be continually formed in the Catholic Church
Key Question: Do I have a strong and growing understanding of the fullness of Truth found in the Catholic Church and am I conforming my life to this Truth (“Short Summary of Catholic Doctrine and Teachings” p ___)?
Do I have a deep understanding of the blessings of the Catholic Church (“Committed to God’s Holy Catholic Church Militant” p ___)?
Have I read and studied the entire Catechism of the Catholic Church and do I often reference it for answers to questions about how I should live as a Catholic Son?
Have I augmented my study of The Catechism of the Catholic Church with focused study of Catholic dogma and other time-honored sources of Catholic truth (e.g. The Baltimore Catechism, The Catechism of the Council of Trent)?
Do I have a firm grasp of the criticisms and attacks on Catholic doctrine and am I ready to defend the faith by persuasively and cheerfully presenting the Truth of the Catholic Church based on Catholic dogma and the Catechism?
Do I always strive to conform my beliefs, thoughts and acts to the fullness of teaching of the Catholic Church and humbly seek guidance or the Sacrament of Penance when I rebel against any teaching which I don’t like?
Am I familiar with the key Saints of the Church celebrated with special Solemnities and Feasts (“Solemnities/Memorials” p ___ and p ___)?
Am I familiar with the many Saints which are identified with Memorials in the Liturgy (Roman Missal) and give thanks for their lives and seek to imitate them?
Do I routinely seek to inspired by the stories of the Saints?
Do I have a Patron Saint (s) and do I know about his/her life and saintly qualities and seek his/her intercession to God on my behalf?
Do I go to my priest or deacon for guidance in growing in the faith to answer questions I have about the faith?
Do I have a trusted spiritual director who has been deeply formed in the Catholic faith and provides me with spiritual guidance?
Do I read Catholic Encyclicals, Apostolic Exhortations and other key Catholic teaching documents so I can be continually formed?
Have I read some of the Church documents of special interest to men (e.g. Into the Breach)?
Do I strive to deepen my spiritual formation by prayerfully reading great Catholic writings by the Saints and trusted catechists?
Do I periodically seek to deepen my understanding of the faith through bible or other catechesis studies, seminars, talks, workshops, parish missions or retreats?
Major Habit 3 – Live a rich Liturgical Life
Key Question: Do I organize and live my life as a zealously devout Catholic?
Do I keep the Precepts of the Church (“Short Summary of Catholic Doctrine and Teaching”, p ___)?
Do I rigorously keep The 3rd Commandment to sanctify Sundays by receiving the Sacrament of the Eucharist, participating in parish activities, resting, spending time with family/friends, spending time in God’s beautiful Creation and meditating upon the Bible and other materials to help me draw closer to God? Do I avoid all unnecessary work, shopping, sports, or any activity that leads me away from God on Sunday?
Do I have a Liturgical Calendar/Roman Missal/Guide which provides details of the daily, weekly, monthly and seasonal Feast Days and use it to plan my special prayers and reception of the Sacrament of the Eucharist?
Do I pray daily and monthly for the special daily and monthly devotions the Church urges men to pray (“Short Summary of Catholic Doctrine and Teachings” p ___) and for the intentions of the Holy Father?
Do I volunteer to support the Liturgy in my parish by volunteering to be an usher, be a lector, offer music talents, giving money to support reverent music, or supporting the vocation of altar boys?
Do I always do my best to participate and be a witness when others receive the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, Matrimony or Catholic Funeral Rites?
Do I have a discipline of praying for those nearest me (including me) on the anniversaries of their baptisms and marriages and for the anniversary of their deaths?
Do I carry at all times a Crucifix and/or Rosary and personally keep Holy Water at my home to seek the help of the Holy Spirit to cleanse me and keep me safe from the Evil One?
Do I plan and take pilgrimages to Cathedrals and Shrines and is it my aspiration to be a pilgrim to the Holy Lands and the Vatican in Rome?
Do I seek out and participate in Eucharistic Processions each year (Corpus Christi, May Crowning of Mary, etc.) and seek to attend Eucharistic Congresses in my home country?
Do I understand the great inspirational power of relics and do I take the opportunity to draw close to these great blessings of the Saints?
Have I had my home blessed by a priest to dedicate it to God and to ward off all evil?
Does my home have beautiful imagery of Christ and His Church, including Crucifixes, a personal shrine, beautiful art which give glory to God and venerate the Saints? If a guest comes into my home, would they quickly recognize that I am a devout Catholic man?
Do I have a devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary? Have I consecrated myself to the Blessed Virgin Mary? Do I have a daily practice of praying for Our Lady’s intercession in my life? Do I offer at least one Hail Mary every day? Do I make a special effort to venerate the Blessed Virgin Mary on the numerous Solemnities, Feast Days and Memorials which honor Our Lady as set in the Roman Missal and the Devotional?
Do I have a devotion to St. Joseph? Have I consecrated myself to St. Joseph? Do I have a daily practice of praying for St. Joseph’s intercession in my life? Do I make a special effort to venerate St. Joseph on the Solemnity, Feast Days and Memorials which honor St. Joseph as set in the Roman Missal and the Devotional?
Do I regularly pray for the intercession and protection of the Angels against Satan and demons, especially praying the St. Michael Prayer each day?
Do I recognize and do I have a daily practice of praying for the protection and intercession of the Guardian Angel God has specially assigned to me for my protection against the attacks of Satan, demons and against evil and accidents?
Are my prayers in synch with the Roman Missal so that I have a daily discipline of remembering and praying for the intercession of the Saints on their Feast Days and Memorials?
Do I have a special prayer relationship with my Patron Saint(s), given to me in my birth name or the name I took in the Sacrament of Confirmation and do I honor my Patron Saint(s) on their annual Feast Day or Memorial?
Do I regularly and zealously seek the blessing of Indulgences as granted by the Church to alleviate the suffering of the Poor Souls in Purgatory who are part of the Communion of Saints?
Major Habit 4 – Battle against Sin and Vice
Key Question: Am I well-informed about the moral life, hold myself strictly accountable for my sins and vigilantly take action to eliminate my vices?
Do I have a deep understanding of the different kinds and degrees of Sins, including the various Venial and Mortal Sins that are described in the Catechism and other guides for the reception of the Sacrament of Penance?
Have I identified the specific types of Mortal and Venial Sins which I am likely to commit, have I firmly resolved to stop sinning, and do I have a plan to battle against the temptations to those sins, including a firm resolve to avoid the near occasion of sin?
Do I know and hold myself accountable for not committing The Seven Deadly Sins (“Short Summary of Catholic Doctrine and Teaching”, p ___)?
Do I keep the holy obligation of fasting and abstinence on Ash Wednesday, Fridays in Lent, and Good Friday?
Do I voluntarily (in the United States) make every Friday a day of penance for my personal sins and the sins of mankind by taking deliberate acts of penance (fasting, abstaining from meat, abstaining from licit pleasure or taking on some austerity)?
Do I absolutely resist unjustly injuring any other person and rigorously keep The 5th Commandment?
Do I valiantly battle against committing any kinds of sexual sin and keep The 6th and 9th Commandments?
Do I vehemently refuse to steal or cheat in any way and keep The 7th Commandment?
Do I keep The 8th Commandment and always strive to tell the truth in all situations?
Do I hold secret envy against others or break The 10th Commandment in any way?
Do I avoid the Sins which cry out to Heaven for Vengeance (“Short Summary of Catholic Doctrine and Teaching”, p ___)?
Do I avoid becoming an accessory to another’s sin (“Short Summary of Catholic Doctrine and Teaching”, p ___)?
Do I diligently strive to gain mastery over the physical cravings and passions of my body by practicing temperance to control over-indulgence in food, drink, sex and other pleasures?
Do I vigilantly abstain from all types of harmful media (internet, movies, t.v., games, podcasts, music) which pollute my mind with evil (magic/the occult, violence, pornography, morbid, portrayal and glorification behaviors which are mortal sins) and the trivial, and hinders my ability to grow in holiness by distracting or perverting me?
Do I set strict limits on my consumption of modern media and avoid forms of news, commentary and entertainment which are biased, inaccurate, perverted, and contrary to the Good, True and Beautiful?
Do I gratefully honor the body God gave me by maintaining a disciplined routine to care for my body by proper nutrition, exercise and necessary health care?
Major Habit 5 – Strive to grow in heroic Virtue
Key Question: Do I have a strong grasp of the Virtues and do I diligently work each day to build virtue (see “Building Virtues and Holy Habits” page__)?
Do I regularly reflect upon The Beatitudes (Mt 5:3-12) which can lead me to the true and lasting happiness Jesus promises?
Do I have a firm grasp of the Vices to which I am most vulnerable and do I have a disciplined plan to grow in the opposing heroic Virtue?
Do I regularly (daily/weekly/monthly) practice and strengthen the Virtues necessary to conquer my controlling Vices and avoid sin?
Do I pray each day for the Holy Spirit to strengthen me in the Theological Virtues (Faith, Hope, Charity)? Do I make daily Acts of Faith, Hope and Charity (“Drawing closer to God in Prayer” p ___)?
Do I show Charity by honoring my father and mother, always showing them respect, honor and gratitude as instructed by God in The 4th Commandment and do my utmost best to be merciful to them, particularly as they age and become infirm?
Do I show Charity by cultivating strong bonds of love with my siblings, forgiving, loving and seeking to support them even when their love is not given in return?
Do I demonstrate the Fruits of the Spirit in my day-to-day interactions with others (“Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit” p ___)?
Do I show Charity by seeking to love those who are unkind and injustice to me and praying for those who do evil things in society?
Do I strive to continually grow in the Cardinal Virtues (Prudence, Justice, Temperance, and Fortitude; “Building the Cardinal Virtues” p ___)?
Major Habit 6 – Perform Works of Mercy
Key Question: Do I continually perform Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy by using my God-given talents and the riches God has given me?
Have I thought deeply about the special talents (skills, resources) God has given me and asked God to help me understand how He wants me to use my talents to serve His Holy Catholic Church?
Do I continually seek to build my talents through practice and education so as to better serve God?
Am I being a good and faithful steward over the riches God has given me?
Do I maintain a prayer list and pray daily for those who are suffering through a lack of faith, other sins or due to illness or loss? Do I always offer to pray for those who I meet who are suffering?
Do I always respond with generous support to those undergoing great suffering, particularly when my family, neighbors and friends face the worst sorrows in life (grave illness, death of a parent, spouse or child, etc.)?
Do I act to receive the generous indulgences for the Poor Souls in Purgatory by praying for the dead and visiting cemeteries during the eight days following All Saints Day (November 1)?
Do I regularly make significant sacrifices to use my time, talent and treasure to perform the Corporal Works of Mercy through the many ministries of the Church and to support my parish and/or parish school (“Performing Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy”, p ___)?
Do I have a firm grasp of the Spiritual Works of Mercy and do I regularly practice them in service to others (“Performing Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy”, p ___)?
Do I regularly evangelize others by expressing my belief in Jesus Christ and His Holy Catholic Church, by volunteering to pray for and offering God’s blessing to those who I meet, through my own acts of prayer and how I live my Catholic life and personally inviting others to consider the fullness of truth of the Catholic Church?
Do I seek to comfort those who are suffering by encouraging and helping them receive the Sacraments of Penance, the Eucharist and the Anointing of the Sick?
Do I actively support the formation of children and adults in my parish to the best of my ability?
Major Habit 7 – Build a Band of Catholic Brothers
Key Question: Do I have close brotherhood with a number of devout Catholic men and am I actively building fraternity in my parish?
Have I diligently worked to form a small group of devout Catholic men (4-6) which meets regularly (weekly/monthly) to help each brother grow in holiness through discussion, education, personal transparency and accountability?
Do I support and have a growing friendship with my parish priest(s) and deacons and diligently seek to respond to their calls to help build the parish?
Have I joined the Knights of Columbus or other Catholic organizations to build fraternity and the parish or broader Church?
Do I actively work with my priest and other Catholic leaders to build fraternity in my parish?
Do I have a number of priests, deacons and men who are more advanced in the faith who help me with my questions and struggles to become a more holy Catholic Son?
Do I seek to respond and mentor men who are young or seeking to grow in the faith?