From Frater Phillip Friedl

Few Catholics understand the virtue of humility. Even worse yet, they do not understand how to obtain this virtue. Instead, the majority of souls are lost through the negligence of acquiring this virtue. It states in Sacred Scripture that God gives grace to those that are humble. If you are not humble 1) your heart will be hardened 2) you cannot properly judge spiritual matters 3) you cannot be in the state of grace if you do not have humility 4) you are dead member in the Body of Christ.

The Pharisees were rebuked because they observe the letter of the law and not the spirit. Prideful souls wish only to see the external attractions. They wish to obtain only the external appearances of piety. “I fast twice in a week: I give tithes of all that I possess.” (Luke 18:12) While humility, wishes to be completely unseen and hidden. This is depicted well with the Publican. “And the publican, standing afar off, would not so much as lift up his eyes towards heaven; but struck his breast, saying: O God, be merciful to me a sinner.” (Luke 18:13)

Our happiness in Heaven is solely based upon one virtue: humility. The more we abase ourselves the more we are able to unite to God closer. The more we realize our misery the more God will fill us with His perfections. We can make more analogies that could be written in volumes of books.

The hardest person to correct is one who has a contracted habit. A contracted habitual act is the most deadly enemy. Sin never wishes to be discovered. Sin never wishes to be exposed. Sin never wants its roots to be pulled out of the ground. Sin wants to stay were it is comfortable, convenient, and relaxing. Sin wishes to always correct others while never correcting itself.

It is here where we must begin. We must begin with ourselves. The old saying states, charity starts at home. The house of virtue must have humility as its foundation. St. Teresa of Avila writes that humility and charity, as virtues, are inseparable. If we boast that we have charity to our neighbor, but lack the virtue of humility, what profit does our soul obtain? We are nothing but liars. We begin by looking at ourselves by saying. “I am the problem. I am the problem. I am the problem.” And we must say it with the deepest conviction. We must always assume responsibility for all failures. We must accuse ourselves first before others that we failed God. If a physical catastrophe would erupt, for example an earthquake, St. Gemma Galgani used to blame herself as the sole cause of God’s anger. This is charity. Charity hides the faults of others. The Blessed Virgin Mary hides our sinfulness under her cloak of innocence. It as if all the blame should put on our dearest mother’s heart. And is that just? Should be Blessed Virgin Mary be blamed for our sins?


I must realize that I have a problem.

I must admit that I have a problem.

I must truly want to change.

I will not give myself any excuses.

I will constantly (hourly) renew my efforts/resolutions.

I must say to myself, “I am prideful, impure, wicked” on a daily basis.

Saint Gregory the Great

In his life of Saint Benedict:

THE first degree of humility is obedience without delay. This beseemeth those who, either on account of the holy servitude they have professed, through fear of hell or for the glory of life everlasting, count nothing more dear to them than Christ. These, presently, as soon as anything is commanded them by the Superior, make o delay in doing it, just as if the command had come from God. Of such, our Lord saith: “At the hearing of the ear he hath obeyed me.” 1 And to teachers He saith:

He that heareth you, heareth me.” 1 Therefore, such as these, leaving immediately everything, and forsaking their own will, leave unfinished what they were about, and with the speedy foot of obedience follow by deeds the voice of him who commands. And thus, as it were in one and the same moment the command of the master and the perfect work of the disciple in the speed of the fear of God, go both jointly together, and are quickly effected by those who ardently desire to advance in the way of eternal life. These take the narrow way, of which the Lord saith: “Narrow is the way which leadeth to life.” 2 They live not according to their own will, nor follow their own desires and pleasures, but, abiding in monasteries, walk according to the command and direction of another, and will to have an Abbot over them. Without doubt these fulfil that saying of our Lord: “I came not to do my own will, but the will of Him Who sent me.” 3

This obedience will then be acceptable to God and pleasing to men, if what is commanded be not done fearfully, slowly, coldly, or with murmuring, or an answer showing unwillingness; because the obedience which is given to superiors is given to God, Who hath said: “He that heareth you, heareth Me.” 4 Hence it ought to be done by the disciples with a good will, because God “loveth a cheerful giver” 5 If the disciple obey with ill-will, and murmur, not only in words, but also in heart, although he fulfil what is commanded him, it will not be acceptable to God, Who considereth the heart of the murmurer. For such a work he shall not have any reward, but rather incurreth the penalty of murmurers, unless he amend and make satisfaction.

The second degree of humility is, if anyone, not wedded to his own will, seeks not to satisfy his desires, but carries out that saying of our Lord: “I came not to do My own Will, but the Will of Him Who sent Me.” 6 The scripture likewise saith: “Self-will engendereth punishment, and necessity purchaseth a crown.”

The third degree of humility is, that a man submit himself for the love of God, with all obedience to his superior, imitating thereby our Lord, of Whom the Apostle saith: “He was made obedient even unto death.” 7

The fourth degree of humility is, that if, in obedience, things that are hard, contrary, and even unjust be done to him, he embrace them with a quiet conscience, and in suffering them, grow not weary, nor give over, since the Scripture saith: “He only that persevereth to the end shall be saved.” 8

1 Ps. xvii. 45

2 Matth. vii. 14

3 Joan. v. 30

4 Luc. x. 16

5 II Cor. ix. 7

6 Joan. vi. 38.

7 Phil. ii. 8.

8 Matth. xxiv. 13.


1 I Cor. ii. 9.110