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Catholic Review of: The 12 Steps To Holiness And Salvation

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Author:  Saint Alphonsus Liguori

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This item received 4 stars overall. (06/10/2009)

Orthodoxy: Completely orthodox.
Reading Level: Intermediate

 Jillian SBy Jillian S (OH) - See all my reviews


12 Virtues Necessary for Salvation

Evaluator Comments

The preface, by Fr. Cornelius Warren, CSSR, says that "the order of virtues considered is that followed by the spiritual sons of St. Alphonsus in the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer. For each month of the year is assigned a particular virtue to which they are to devote their special attention. This is a practice highly recommended by the masters of the spiritual life, and is fraught with the happiest results." 

Thus, I began this book at the beginning of the year last year and endeavored to read one of the 12 chapters [virtues] each month of the year. Each chapter defines and describes a particular virtue with plenty of examples and references from the Sacred Scriptures and lives of the Saints. I usually read the chapter during my Holy Hour and afterwards tried to meditate on that particular virtue (the chapters are short, so they did not take long to read). I did find it a fruitful practice; however, though the chapters are short, they contain much 'food for thought' and I think it would be good to continually read the same chapter throughout the month while adding in pious practices devoted to that month's particular virtue. I like St. Alphonsus Liguori; his writing style is very direct and full of many pious examples and the witness of earlier Saints. He inspires me to strive harder for holiness and I found his exhortations challenging and accessible.

In case you are wondering, here is the breakdown of virtues covered by St. Alphonsus: 

1. Faith 
2. Hope 
3. Love of God 
4. Love for our Neighbor 
5. Poverty 
6. Chastity 
7. Obedience 
8. Meekness and Humility 
9. Mortification 
10. Recollection 
11. Prayer 
12. Self-Denial and Love of the Cross

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