S. Bonaventurae Bagnoregis

H. R. E. Cardinalis &
Doctor Ecclesiae Universalis

COLLATIONES
DE SEPTEM DONIS SPIRITUS SANCTI

COLLATIO V

DE DONO FORTITUDINIS

Collatio Prima

St.. Bonaventure of Bagnoregio

Cardinal of the Holy Roman Church & Doctor of the Universal Church

CONFERENCES ON THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

CONFERENCE V

ON THE GIFT OF FORTITUDE

First Conference

1. Mulierem fortem quis inveniet? Procul et de ultimis finibus pretium eius. Quaesivit lanam et linum et operata est consilio manuum suarum 1. -- Sicut turris David collum tuum, quae aedificata est cum propugnaculis; mille clypei pendent ex ea, omnis armatura fortium 2. Verbum ultimum scribitur in Cantico canticorum et dictum est sponsae sive matri Ecclesiae, cuius collum simile est turri David; mille clypei etc. Collum dicitur, unde egreditur doctrina veritatis. Collum ad duo servit nobis, scilicet ad suscipiendam escam et ad exprimendum sermones. Ita dicitur mater Ecclesia collum, quia ex ea egreditur doctrina veritatis; unde dicit: mille clypei pendent ex ea. Item procedit ab ea universitas sermonum ad corroborandum animas; unde dicit: omnis armatura fortium. Nihil est, quod valet ad habendam spiritualem fortitudinem, quod sacra Scriptura non explicet. -- Debemus loqui de quarto dono Spiritus sancti, scilicet de dono fortitudinis. Rogabimus in principio Dominum, etc.

1. A strong woman who will find (one)? Far off and from the last ends (of the earth) her price. She sought wool and flax and worked by the counsel of her hands 1. -- Your neck (is) as the Tower of David, which has been built with ramparts; a thousand round-shields hand from her, all the armor of the strong 2. This [ultimum] word is written in the Canticle of Canticles and it is said of the spouse or of Mother Church, whose neck is similar to the Tower of David; a thousand round-shields etc.. It is called a neck, whence steps forth the doctrine of truth. A neck serves us for two things, that is, to take up food and to express conversations [sermones]. Thus Mother Church is called a neck, because from Her steps forth the doctrine of truth; whence he says: a thousand round-shields hang from her. Likewise there proceeds from her a universe [universitas] of conversations to thoroughly strengthen souls; whence he says: all the armor of the strong. There is nothing, which is valuable for the attainment [valet ad habendam] of spritual fortitude, that Sacred Scripture does not explain. -- We ought to speak of the fourth gift of the Holy Spirit, that is, of the gift of fortitude. We will beg in the beginning the Lord, (who lives and reigns ...).

2. Mulierem fortem quis inveniet etc. Verbum istud scriptum est in Proverbiis; absque dubio dictum est ad commendationem matris Ecclesiae, specialiter ad commendationem Virginis gloriosae. In quo verbo a tribus commendatur: primo, a spiritualis fortitudinis roboratione; secundo, a supernaturalis conceptus fecunditate; et terio, a salutaris consilii discretione. Primum notatur, cum dicit: Mulierem fortem quis inveniet etc. Secundum, cum dicit: Procul et de ultimis finibus pretium eius. Tertium subdit: Quaesivit lanam et linum etc. -- De dono fortitudinis dicemus nunc; de privilegio fecunditatis cras in mane, et de dono consilii cras in sero.

2. A strong woman who will find (one) etc.. That word is written in Proverbs; without doubt it is said for the commendation of Mother Church, especially for the commendation of the glorious Virgin. In which word She is commended for three things: first, for strengthening [roboratione] of spiritual fortitude; second, for fecundity of supernatural conceiving [conceptus]; and third, for discretion of salutary counsel. The first is noted, when he says: A strong woman who will find (one) etc.. The second, when he says: Far off and from the last ends (of the earth) her price. The third he adds: She sought wool and flax etc.. -- Of the gift of fortitude we will now speak; of the privilege of fecundity tomorrow in the morning, and of the gift of counsel tomorrow in the evening.

3. Primo, dico, commendatur a spiritualis fortitudinis robore, cum dicit: Mulierem fortem quis inveniet? Quaerit non desperando, sed confidendo. Quis igitur inveniet? Certe ille qui attingit a fine usque ad finem 3; ipse inveniet eam et misit ad eam paranymphum, id est Gabrielem Archangelum. Gabriel interpretatur fortitudo Dei, et ipse missus est ad inveniendum fortem mulierem. Absque dubio Salomon in ea voluit requiescere tanquam in loco securo; sed hoc non potuit esse, nisi esset fortis, quia dicitur in Cantico, quod ante lectum Salomonis ambiunt sexaginta fortes 4. Salomon interpretatur rex desiderabilis; lectum eius ambiunt sexaginta fortes. -- Sexagenarius numerus est perfectus et resurgit ex duplicatione numeri senarii in denarium, et sic per ipsum significatur universitas operum; vel resurgit ex duplicatione numeri denarii in senarium numerum, et significatur per ipsum universitas decem praeceptorum decalogi. Quantum aliquis est fortis et expeditus secundum dictamen legum et praeceptorum decalogi; tunc est fortis, ita quod ab exteriori laedi non potest. Unde in Proverbiis: Fortitudo et decor indumentorum eius 5. Sicut corpus ornatur ex habitu, ita ornatur anima ex fortitudine; ideo dicitur indumentum animae; nec solum fortitudo est indumentum animae, vel Virginis gloriosae, immo matris Ecclesiae. Unde Isaias: Consurge, consurge, filia Sion; induere vestimentis gloriae tuae 6.

3. First, I say, She is commended for the strength [robore] of spiritual fortitude, when he says: A strong woman who will find (one)? One seeks not by despairing, but by trusting [confidendo]. Who therefore will find? Certainly He who reaches from end even to end 3; He will find Her and send a best-man [paranymphum] to Her, that is, the Archangel Gabriel. "Gabriel" is interpreted "the fortitude of God", and he was sent to find a strong woman. Without doubt Solomon wanted to rest in Her as in a secure place; but this could not be, unless he was strong, because it is said in the Canticle, that before the couch [lectum] of Solomon sixty strongmen stood in flanks [ambiunt] 4. "Solomon" is interpreted "desireable king"; sixty strongmen flanked [ambiunt] his couch. -- The number sixty is perfect and results [resugrit] from the multiplication [ex duplicatione] of a group of six into a group of ten, and by this the entirety [universitas] signifies the ten precepts of the Decalogue. As much as one is strong and unshackled [expeditus] accdording to the dictate of the Law and the precepts of the Decalogue; then one is strong, so that he cannot be wounded by what is exterior [ab exeriori]. Whence in Proverbs: Fortitude and ornament (are) His clothes [decor . . . indumentorum] 5. As the body is embellished [ornatur] from habit, so the soul is embellished from fortitude; for that reason it is called a piece of clothing [indumentum] for the soul; nor is only fortitude a piece of clothing for the soul, and/or for the glorious Virgin, nay rather (also) for Mother Church. Whence Isaiah: Thoroughly rise up, thoroughly rise up, daughter Sion; put on [induere] the vestments of your glory 6.

4. De habitu fortitudinis, qualiter possimus indueri, est sermo. Si recte volumus describere fortitudinem; attendendum, quod de caelo est. Unde in libro Machabaeorum: Non in multitudine exercitus victoria belli, sed de caelo fortitudo est 7. Psalmus: Mirabilis Deus in sanctis suis; Deus Israel ipse dabit virtutem et fortitudinem plebi suae 8. Ergo fortitudo est donum Dei. Et ut melius cognoscamus donum fortitudinis, tria volumus dicere de isto dono. Primo volo ipsum describere ex parte dantis; secundo, ex parte suscipientis; et tertio, ex parte operis consequentis.

4. This talk concerns the habit of fortitude, how we can be clothed (by it). If we want to rightly describe fortitude; one must pay attention [attendendum], that it is from Heaven. Whence in the Book of Maccabees: Not in the multitude of an army (is) the victory of war, but from Heaven is fortitude 7. The Psalm: God is wonderful in His saints; the God of Israel Himself will give virtue and fortitude to His common-folk [plebi suae] 8. Therefore fortitude is a gift of God. And so that we may better become acquainted with [cognoscamus] the gift of fortitude, we want to say three things concerning this gift. First I want to describe it on the part of the one giving it; secondly, on the part of the one taking it up [suscipientis]; and third, on the part of the work of the one sucessfully pursuing it [consequentis].

5. Primo, dico, volo ipsum describere ex parte dantis; et dico, quod datur a Deo protegente, a Deo redimente et a Deo inhabitante. -- Primo, dico, datur donum fortitudinis a Deo protegente. Protegit enim nos Deus secundum ordinationem hierarchicam, muniens nos intus et extra. Scribitur in Proverbiis: Turris fortissima nomen Domini, ad ipsum currit iustus et exaltabitur 9; et in eodem: Substantia divitis urbs fortitudinis et quasi murus validus circumdans eum 10. Fortitudo est, sicut a principio solido, sublimi et forti, a Deo; et Deus aeternus est origo fortitudinis in omnibus rebus; quia nihil est potens neque forte nisi per fortitudinem primi principii. Igitur ista fortitudo descendit a Deo nos protegente tanquam a primo principio secundum hierarchicas dispositiones; quae fortitudo reddit omnem hominem divitem et securum et potentem et confidentem.

5. First, I say, I want to describe it on the part of the one giving it; and I say, that it is given by God protecting, by God redeeming and by God indwelling. -- First, I say, the gift of fortitude is given by God protecting. For God protects us according to a hierarchical ordering [ordinationem hierarchicam], by walling [muniens] us inside and out. It is written in Proverbs: A tower most strong (is) the Name of the Lord, to it runs the just and he shall be exalted 9; and in the same (passage): The substance of the rich (is) the city of fortitude and as the withstanding wall [murus validus] surrounding it 10. Fortitude is from God, as from a solid, sublime, and strong principle; and the eternal God is the origin of fortitude in all things; because nothing is powerful nor strong except through the fortitude of the First Principle. Therefore that fortitude descends from God protecting us as from the First Principle according to hierarchical dispositions; which fortitude renders [reddit] every man rich and secure and powerful and confident.

6. Secundo est ista fortitudo a Deo redimente per Verbi divini incarnationem. Unde Isaias: Fortitudo mea et laus mea Dominus, et factus est mihi in salutem; haurietis aquas in gaudio de fontibus Salvatoris 11. Istae sunt aquae, in quibus anima fortificatur, purificatur, redimitur, sanctificatur et eripitur de potestate daemonum. Per quid redimitur anima? Dicitur in Habacuc: Splendor eius ut lux erit; cornua in manibus eius; ubi abscondita est fortitudo eius 12. Item scribitur: Cum fortis armatus custodit atrium suum, in pace sunt ea quae possidet; si autem fortior eo superveniens vicerit eum, universa arma eius auferet, in quibus confidebat, et spolia eius distribuet 13. Iste fortior est Deus, quia quod infirmum est Dei fortius est hominibus 14. Filius Dei factus est infirmus propter nos.

6. Second, that fortitude is from God redeeming through the Incarnation of the Divine Word. Whence Isaiah: My fortitude and my praise (is) the Lord, and He has been made (man) to save me; you will draw waters in joy from the fountains of the Savior 11. Those are the waters, in which the soul is fortified [fortificatur], purified, redeemed, santified and snatched from the power of the demons. Through which is the soul redeemed? It is said in Habakuk: His splendor shall be as the light; horns in his hands; where His fortitude is hidden away 12. Likewise it is written: When the armed strongman guards his entrancehall [atrium], in peace are those things which he possesses; however if one stronger overcoming him conquers him, all [universa] his arms, in which he trusted, shall be borne away, and he will distribute his spoils 13. That one who is stronger is God, because what is infirm in God is stronger than men 14. The Son of God was made infirm for our sake.

7. Tertia ratio influentiae fortitudinis est a Deo inhabitante. Unde in Michaea: Repletus sum fortidudine Domini, iudicio et virtute 15. Corpus humanum, quando non habet spiritum, non habet virtutem, etiam si esset corpus giganteum; ita si Deus non est in anima, tunc ipsa non habet virtutem. De fortissimo nostro, scilicet de Christo, dicitur: Requiescet super eum Spiritus Domini, spiritus sapientiae et intellectus, spiritus consilii et fortitudinis, spiritus scientiae et pietatis 16 etc.; et ponit in medio fortitudinem, quia non habitat Christus in nobis, nisi habeamus ista duo, scilicet Spiritum Domini et fortitudinem; et ideo in medio posuit fortitudinem. Petrus ad vocem ancillae negavit 17, et stetit contra Caesarem; quia sine Spiritu Domini anima est debilis, et cum Spiritu Domini est fortis. Contra Caesarem stetit, quia cum Spiritu Domini tunc fortis fuit.

7. The third reason for the influence of fortitude is from God indwelling. Whence in Micah: I am filled full with the fortitude of the Lord, with judgement and with virtue 15. The human body, when it does not have spirit, does not have virtue, even if it is a gigantic body; thus if God is not in the soul, then it does not have virtue. Of our most strongman, that is, of Christ, it is said: There will rest upon Him the Spirit of the Lord, the spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the spirit of counsel and of fortitude, the spirit of knowledge and of piety 16 etc.; and he places fortitude in the middle, because Christ does not dwell in us, unless we have those two things, that is, the Spirit of the Lord and fortitude; and for that reason he placed fortitude in the middle. (St.) Peter at the voice of the handmaid denied (Him) 17, and (yet) he stood against Caesar; because without the Spirit of the Lord the soul is weak, and with the Spirit of the Lord it is strong. Against Caesar he stood, because he was then strong with the Spirit of the Lord.

8. In huius mysterii designationem dicitur, quod Samson secundum doctrinam Angeli non permisit, novaculam ascendere super caput suum 18; sed creverunt crines, et factus est fortissimus hominum. Mirabile fuit, quod cum crinibus fortis fuit et sine capillis factus est infirmus. Dalila meretrix decepit eum; petiit ab eo, ubi esset fortitudo eius. Quatuor vicibus petiit ab eo, et quarta vice dixit ei veritatem, tribus vero primis vicibus celavit ei veritatem. Prima vice dixit: Si septem funibus nerviceis fuero ligatus, ero similis ceteris hominibus 19; et cum esset ligatus, et venirent philistaei ad eum, ut caperent eum, statim rupit funes. Item petiit ab eo, ubi esset fortitudo sua; et dixit: Si ligatus fuero septem funibus novis, qui nondum fuerunt in opere; ero sicut ceteri homines 20. Tertio dixit ei: Si septem capillos meos infixeris in terra cum clavo, ero sicut ceteri homines 21. Quarto revelavit ei veritatem et dixit: Si septem capillos meos, qui sunt in capite meo, abraseris, ero similis certeris hominibus 22; et tunc ceperunt eum philistaei. Quid est hoc? -- Dico quod abrasio capillorum significat subtractionem septiformis gratiae Spiritus sancti. De omnibis sanctis planum est, quod, quamdiu remansit cum eis gratia Spiritus sancti, fortes fuerunt. -- Quare non dixit ei, ubi esset fortitudo sua? Videte, in amissione Spiritus sancti est iste processus; per istam viam perditur Spiritus sanctus. Quatuor sunt oblectamenta sensuum, scilicet occupatio, cogitatio, incurvatio affectionum interiorum et impugnatio divinarum legum. In ultimo amittitur Spiritus sanctus, in aliis vero disponitur homo ad hoc. Primo diabolus offert delectabilia sensus; et hoc est septem funibus nerviceis ligari. Postea, cum homo immoratur cogitationibus in delectabili oblato, tunc ligatur septem funibus novis, qui nondum fuerunt in opere. Post sequitur incurvatio affectionum: sicut ex multitudine radiorum generatur calor; sic, quando est multiplex cogitatio in anima, tunc incurvatur anima ad illud; et hoc significat ligatio crinium cum clavo in terra. Adhuc non perdit homo Spiritum sanctum. Sed quarto sequitur impugnatio divinarum legum, cum crines capitis abraduntur, id est, cum gratia Spiritus sancti subtrahitur. -- Habemus modo, a quo procedit donum Spiritus sancti, quia a Deo protegente, a Deo redimente et a Deo inhabitante. Per gratiam Spiritus sancti natura custodit originem vitae et nos debemus custodire spiritum vitae. Quid valeret homo, nisi haberet Spiritum sanctum?

8. In designating this mystery it is said, that Samson according to the doctrine of the Angel did not permit a razor to ascend upon his head 18; but his hairs [crinibus] grew, and he became the strongest of men. It was wonderful, because he was strong with hairs and without hair [capillis] he became infirm. Dalila the prostitute deceived him; she asked him [petiit ab eo], where his fortitude was. Four times she asked him, and on the fourth time he told her the truth, but the first three times he concealed the truth from her. The first time he said: If I be bound with seven sinew-like ropes, I will be similar to all other men 19; and when he was bound, and the Philistines camw towards him, to sieze him, he immediately broke the ropes. Likewise she asked him, where his fortitude was; and he said: If I be bound with seven new ropes, which have not yet been at work; I will be as all other men 20. The third time he said to her: If you fasten my seven hairs upon the earth with a nail, I will be as all other men 21. The fourth time he revealed to her the truth and he said: If you scrape off the seven hairs, which are on my head, I wil be similar to all other men. 22; and then the Philistines siezed him. What is this? -- I say that the scraping off of the hairs signified the subtraction of the septiform grace of the Holy Spirit. Of all saints it is plane, that as long as there remained with them the grace of the Holy Spirit, they were strong. -- Why did she not say to him, where is your fortitude? See, hers is that process of sending away [amissione] the Holy Spirit, through which the Holy Spirit is lost [perditur]. Four are the amusements [oblectamenta] of the senses, that is, being occupied [occupatio], thinking [cogitation], the bending [incurvatio] of the interior affections and the impunging of divine laws [legum]. In the last the Holy Spirit is sent away, but in the others a man is only disposed towards this. First the devil offers the delights [delectabilia] of sense; and by this one is bound by seven sinew-like ropes. Afterwards, when a man delays in thinking upon the delight offered, then one is bound by seven new ropes, which were not yet at work. After, there follows the bending of the affections: as from a multitude of rays, heat is generated; so, when manifold thinking is in the soul, then the soul is bent toward that; and this the-binding-of-hairs-upon-the-earth-with-a-nail signifies. Still a man has not lost the Holy Spirit. But fourth there follows the impugning of the divine laws, when the hairs of the head are scrapped off, that is, when the grace of the Holy Spirit is subtracted. -- We have the means, by which the gift of the Holy Spirit proceeds, because (it is) from God protecting, from God redeeming and from God indwelling. Through the grace of the Holy Spirit nature guards the origin of life and we ought to guard the spirit of life. What value is a man, unless he have the Holy Spirit?

9. Dicas modo: per quid disponitur anima ad susceptionem influxus istius doni? Dico, quod fortitudo, quae est donum Spiritus sancti, venit in nos primo per inexpugnabile fidei scutum; secundo, per imperturbabile spei solatium; et tertio, per inextinguibile caritatis incendium.

9. You now may say: through what is the soul disposed to taking up the influx of that gift? I say, that fortitude, which is a gift of the Holy Spirit, comes into us first through the inexpungable shield [scutum] of faith; second, through the imperturbable solace of hope; and third, through the inexstinguishable kindling [incendium] of charity.

10. Primo, dico, disponitur anima ad donum fortitudinis per inexpugnabile fidei scutum. Unde Apostolus ad Hebraeos: Qui per fidem vicerunt regna etc.; fortes facti sunt in bello 23; ad Ephesios: In omnibus sumentes scutum fidei in quo possitis omnia tela nequissimi ignea exstinguere 24; et in Esdra: Fortis res est vinum, fortior est rex, fortiores sunt mulieres, dixit tertius; et quartus dixit: Fortissima res est veritas 25. -- Ostendit, qualiter homo potest vincere fortitudinem diaboli. Diabolus trahit hominem ad concupiscentiam carnis, ad concupiscentiam oculorum et ad superbiam vitae 26. Concupiscentia carnis reddit homines fortissimos; multa patiuntur homines, ut possint explere libidinem carnis. Similiter, ambitio reddit homines fortes; propter ambitionem honorum multi multa patiuntur. Item, concupiscentia oculorum, quae est fomentum concupiscentiae et superbiae, reddit homines fortes, quia multa patiuntur homines, ut temporalia acquirant. In rege significatur superbia; in vino, quod facit hominem ebriosum et reddit hominem audacem, significatur concupiscentia oculorum. Scribitur: Ne intuearis vinum, cum flavescit 27 in scypho. Per mulieres significatur concupiscentia carnis. Quae est materia resistendi istis? Quomodo potest vinci vinum et alia duo? Dico: per veritatem. Psalmus: Scuto circumdabit te veritas eius, scilicet per fidem inhabitantem, non timebis a timore nocturo 28 etc. Et beatus Petrus dixit: Adversarius vester tamquam leo rugiens circuit, quaerens, quem devoret; cui resistite fortes in fide 29. Si amaremus veritatem, non timeremus diabolum, quia scriptum est: Oculi Domini contemplantur universam terram et praebent fortitudinem his qui corde perfecto credunt in eum 30.

10. First, I say, the soul is disposed to the gift of fortitude through the inexpungable shield of faith. Whence the Apostle to the Hebrews: Who through faith conquered kingdoms etc..; were made strong in war 23; to the Ephesians: In all things taking the shield of faith in which you can exstinguish all the fiery darts of the worthless one [nequissimi] 24; and in Ezra: A strong thing is wine, stronger is a king, stronger are wives, he said third; and fourth he said: The strongest thing is truth 25. -- He shows, how a man can conquer the fortitude of the devil. The devil draws a man towards concupiscence of the flesh, towards concupiscence of the eyes and towards pride of life 26. The concupiscence of the flesh renders men most strong; men suffer much, to be able to quench the lust [explere libidinem] of the flesh. Similarly, ambition renders men strong; on account of ambition for honors many suffer many things. Likewise, concupiscence of the eyes, which is the foment of concupiscence and of pride, renders men strong, because men suffer many things, to acquire temporal things. In the king pride is signified; in the wine, that makes a man drunk and renders a man bold [audacem], concupiscence of the eyes is signified. It is written: Do not look at wine attentively [intuearis], when it becomes yellow 27 in the goblet. By wives, concupiscense of the flesh is signified. What material withstands them? In what manner can wine or the other two be conquered? I say: through truth. The Psalm: As a shield, will His truth surround you, that is, by indwelling faith, you shall not be afraid of the night-time fear 28 etc.. And blessed Peter said: Your adversary goes around as a roaring lion, seeking, whom to devour; resist him, (being yourselves) strong in faith 29. If we loved the truth, we would not fear the devil, because it is written: The eyes of the Lord contemplate the entire earth and they provide [praebent] fortitude to those who believe in Him with a perfect heart 30.

11. Secunda dispositio influxus doni fortitudinis est per imperturbabile spei solatium. Unde Apostolus ad Habraeos: Fortissimum habemus solatium, qui confugimus ad tenendam propositam nobis spem 31. Et in Isaia: Qui sperant in Domino mutabunt fortitudinem suam; assument pennas ut aquilae, current et non laborabunt; ambulabunt et non deficient 32. Homo libenter portaret magnum onus pro marca auri. Si tantum reficit musca; igitur multum deberes te movere ad sustinendum pro spe futuri praemii et aeterni. In Deo debemus confidere, quia dat lasso fortitudinem 33. Philosophus vult, quod una de virtutibus cardinalibus sit magnanimitas; sed non oportet, quod sit in te, sed in Deo ista magnanimitas, quae est virtus.

11. The second disposition to the influx of the gift of fortitude is through the imperturbable solace of hope. Whence the Apostle to the Hebrews: We have the strongest solace, who take refuge [confugimus] in holding the hope proposed to us 31. And in Isaiah: They who hope in the Lord will change their fortitude; they will assume wings as eagles, they will run and they will not labor; the will walk and they will not become weak [deficient] 32. A man would freely bear a great burden for a mark of gold [approx. US $4,000]. If a fly refreshes so much; you ought, therefore, to move yourself to sustain much for the hope of a future and eternal reward. In God we ought to confide, because to the weary He gives fortitude 33. The Philospher wants, that one of the cardinal virtues be magnanimity; but it is not proper, that that magnanimity, which is a virtue, be in you, but in God.

12. Tertio disponitur homo ad influxum doni fortitudinis per inextinguibile caritatis incendium. Unde in Cantico: Pone me ut signaculum super cor tuum, ut signaculum super brachium tuum; quia fortis est ut mors dilectio, dura sicut infernus aemulatio; lampades eius lampades ignis atque flammarum; aquae multae non potuerunt exstinguere caritatem 34. Credis exstinguere fornacem ardentem cum gutta aquae? Omnis virtus est sicut gutta aquae respectu animae amantis. Fortis est ut mors dilectio; mors omnes vincit, similiter dilectio totum vincit. Dura sicut infernus aemulatio; infernus quod tenet non dimittit, ita caritas omnia vincit et fortiter tenet. Paule, quid dicis de caritate? Quis, inquit, separabit me a caritate Dei? Respondet: Tribulatio? an angustia? an fames? an nuditas? an periculum? an persecutio? an gladius? Et dicit: Certus sum, quia neque mors neque vita neque instantia neque futura poterunt me separare a caritate, quae est in Christo Iesu 35. Chrysostomus dicit, quod Paulus enumerat omnes creaturas et dicit: Neque creatura alia poterit me separare a caritate, quae est in Christo Iesu; id est, si de novo posset fieri creatura, non posset separare me. -- Ista caritas est trahens nos ad naturam caelestem, non permittit peregrinam impressionem in nobis; quantum est de se, perpetua est; nisi dem libellum repudii, non auferet Deus caritatem suam a nobis. In Psalmo: Diligam te, Domine, fortitudo mea, Dominus firmamentum meum et refugium meum et liberator meus 36. Protector vitae meae, a quo trepidabo? 37 Catharina et Lucia fortes fuerunt per amorem Dei. Si non sumus ligati cum Domino per caritatem, facile amittimus fortitudinem nostram. -- Patet modo, a quo est origo doni fortitudinis, et per quae disponimur ad istum influxum doni fortitudinis.

12. Third, a man is disposed to the influx of the gift of fortitude through the inexstinguishable kindling of charity. Whence in the Canticle: Place me as a token [signaculum] upon your heart, as a token upon your arm; because strong as death is love [dilectio], durable as Hell (its) rivalry; its lamps the lamps of fire and of flames; many waters could not exstinguish charity 34. Do you believe that you (can) exstinguish a burning furnace with a drop of water? Every virtue is as a drop of water in respect to the soul of the lover [animae amantis]. Strong as death is love; death conquers all (men), similarly love [dilectio] conquers everything [totum] Durable as Hell (its) rivalry; Hell because it holds does not let go [dimittit], thus charity conquers and strongly holds all things [omnia]. Paul, what do you say of charity? Who, he says, will separate me from the charity of God? He responds: Tribulation? or anguish? or hunger? or nakedness? or danger? or persecution? or the sword? And he says: I am certain, that neither death nor life, neither things imminent nor future could separate me from the charity, which is in Christ Jesus 35. (St. John) Chrysostom says, that Paul enumerated all creatures and says: Nor can anyother creature separate me from the charity which is in Christ Jesus; that is, if a new creature [de novo creatura] could be made, it would not separate me. -- That charity is drawing us to (our) heavenly nature [naturam caelestem], it does not release a foreign attack [permittit peregrinam impressionem] upon us; as much as it is of itself, it is perpetual; unless I give (Him) a writ of devorce [dem libellum repudii], God will not take His charity away from us (sic). In the Psalm: I love Thee, Lord, my fortitude, the Lord my firmament and my refuge and my liberator 36. Protector of my life, from whom shall I be anxious [trepidabo] ? 37 (Sts.) Catherine and Lucy were strong through the love [amorem] of God. If we have not been bound with the Lord through charity, we easily let go of [amittimus] our fortitude.

13. Sed scitis, quod habitus sine actu nihil est; ideo sciendum, quod ad tria datur donum fortitudinis: primo, ad perficiendum operationes viriles; secundo, ad prosternendum aŽreas potestates; et tertio, ad perferendum mundiales tribulationes. -- Primo, dico, datur donum fortitudinis ad perficiendum operationes viriles; unde in Proverbiis: Egestatem operata est manus remissa; manus autem fortium parat divitias 38. Et de forti muliere dicitur: Manum suam misit ad fortia, et digiti eius apprehenderunt fusum 39. Loquitur de Ecclesia et de membris eius. Prius oportet ponere manum ad fortia, quam digiti apprehendant fusum, id est, oportet prius fortiter agere, antequam homo possit perspicaciter docere. In fuso, quo extrahitur filum de stupa, significatur industria, per quam homines accipiunt doctrinam et explicant eam. Qui vult bene docere, oportet, quod manum mittat ad fortia. In libro Regum dicitur: Ingredere, quia vir fortis es, et bona annuntias 40; et in Isaia: Super montem excelsum ascende tu, qui evangelizas Sion 41. Si brachium est debile, etiam si gladius fuerit fortis et bonus; non erit bonus ictus. Aliqui pleni sunt sermonibus et parum habent de operationibus.

13. But you know, that a habit without act is nothing; for that reason it must be known, that for three things is the gift of fortitude given: first, to accomplish manly works [ad perficiendum operationes viriles]; second, to cast down the powers of the air [aŽreas potestates]; and third, to endure [ad perferendum] worldly tribulations. -- First, I say, that the gift of fortitude is given to accomplish manly works; whence in Proverbs: A negligent hand has worked indigence; however the hand of the strong prepares riches 38. And of the strong woman it is said: She dispatches her hands to strong (works), and her fingers grasp the spindle 39. (This) is spoken of the Church and of Her members. It is proper to place one's hand to strong (works) before [prius quam] (one's) fingers grasp the spindle, that is, it is proper first to act strongly, afterwards a man can teach in a perspicacious manner [perspicaciter]. In the spindle, by which the thread is extracted from the tow [stupa], there is signified the industry, through which men accept doctrine and explain it. It is proper that he, who wants to teach well, dispatch his hands to strong (works). In the Book of Kings it is said: Step inside, because you are a strong man, and you announce good things 40; and in Isaiah: Ascend upon an exalted mountain, you who evangelize Sion 41. If an arm is weak, even if the sword was strong and good; there will not be a good blow. Some are full of conversations and have too little of works.

14. Secundo datur donum Spiritus sancti ad prosternendas aŽreas potestates. Unde in Ioanne: Scribo vobis, iuvenes, quoniam fortes estis, et verbum Dei manet in vobis, et vicistis malignum 42. Ista fortitudo debet esse in omni christiano et specialiter in duce exercitus populi christiani. Scribitur in libro Machabaeorum, quod Iudas fortis viribus a iuventute sua, ipse sit vobis princeps militiae, et ipse aget bellum populi 43. Omnis, qui accipit curam animarum, efficitur princeps militiae; et quando princeps non est bonus, tunc exercitus est in magno periculo. Unde conqueritur Ieremias: Recessit, inquit, omnis decor a filia Sion; facti sunt principes eius sicut arietes non invenientes pascua, et abierunt absque fortitudine ante faciem subsequentis 44. Duo fuerunt, quibus Dominus dedit fortitudinem, scilicet, Caleb et Iosue. De Caleb dicitur: Dedit Dominus fortitudinem ipsi Caleb, et usque in senectutem permansit illa virtus, ut ascenderet in excelsum terrae locum 45. Et similiter dicitur de Iosue, quod fortis in bello 46 factus est. Caleb interpretatur totum cor. et Iosue interpretatur salvatio. Isti pro salute aliorum circumierunt explorare terram promissionis 47.

14. Second, the gift of the Holy Spirit is given to cast down the powers of the air. Whence in John: I write to you, young men, since your are strong, and the word of God remains in you, and you have conquered the malignant one [malignum] 42. That fortitude ought to be in every Christian and especially in the leader of the army of the Christian people. It is written in the Book of Maccabees, that Let Judas strong in strengths [viribus] from his youth, be for you the prince of the militia, and he himself will conduct the people's war 43. Everyone who accepts the care of souls, becomes [efficitur] a prince of the militia; and when the prince is not good, then the army is in great danger. Whence Jerimiah complains aloud [conqueritur]: Vanished, he says, is every ornament from daughter Sion; they have become her princes as rams not finding pasture, and the have gone away without fortitude before the face of the one pursuing them 44. There were two, to whom the Lord gave fortitude, that is, Caleb and Joshua. Of Caleb it is said: The Lord gave fortitude to him, Caleb, and even to his old age that virtue remained [permansit], so that he could ascend [ut ascenderet] unto the exalted place of the land 45. And similarly it is said of Joshua, that he was made strong in war 46. Caleb is interpreted "whole heart". And Joshua is interpreted "salvation". On behalf of the salvation of others those (men) went about exploring the land of promise 47.

15. Tertio datur donum fortitudinis ad perferendas mundiales tribulationes. Unde dicitur in libro Machabaeorum, quod Eleazarus, quando a vita decessit, exemplum fortitudinis iuvenibus et senibus derelinquens dixit: Libenter pro amore tuo haec patior 48. Potuit liberari, si simulasset, se carnes porcinas comedisse; sed noluit, immo potius voluit mori et exemplum fortitudinis aliis relinquere. -- Quis habebit illum donum? Omnes modo fugiunt pro modico, pro amissione modicae rei temporalis, vel modici commodi; et quare? Quia non habent fortitudinem. Sed dicit ipse Iob: Tenebit iustus viam suam 49. Via ipsius Christi est, quod homo munde et fortiter ambulet. Accinxit, inquit, fortitudine lumbos suos 50. Et alibi dicitur: Super excelsa deducet me victor in psalmis canentem 51. -- Rogabimus Dominum nostrum Iesum Christum, ut ipse per suam misericordiam dignetur nos ita ducere et regere in ista vita mortali, ut possimus dona praedicta Spiritus sancti obtinere et pervenire ad illud ineffabile gaudium, in quo vivit et regnat ille quem "videbimus, amabimus, et laudabimus", praestante ipso, qui est trinus et unus; Pater et Filius et Spiritus sanctus. Amen.

15. Third, the gift of fortitude is given to endure worldly tribulations. Whence it is said in the Book of Maccabees, that Eleazar, when he passed from life, leaving an example of fortitude for the young and old, said: Freely for Thy love [amore]I suffer these things 48. He could have been freed, if he pretended [simulasset], that he had eaten pieces of pork; but he did not want to, nay rather he wanted to die and to leave an example of fortitude to all. -- Who will have that gift? All now flee for a little thing, for the loss of a little temporal thing, and/or of a little convenience [modici commodi]; and why? Because they do not have fortitude. But Job himself says: The just will hold his way 49. The way of Christ Himself is, that a man walk cleanly and strongly. Gird, he says, your loins with fortitude 50. And elsewhere it is said: The victor has lead me, as I sing in psalms, forth upon the heights 51. -- We will beg Our Lord Jesus Christ, that He through His mercy may deign to thus lead and rule us in this mortal life, that we may be able to obtain the aforesaid gifts of the Holy Spirit and arrive at that ineffable joy, in which there lives an reigns He, whom "we will see, love and praise", by His leave [praestante ipso], who is Three and One; the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.


1. Prov 31, 10-13.

2. Cant 4, 4.

3. Sap 8, 1.

4. Cant 3, 7.

5. Prov 31, 25.

6. Is 50, 1.

7. 1 Mach 3, 19.

8. Ps 67, 36.

9. Prov 18, 10.

10. Prov 18, 11; cf. 10, 15.

11. Is 12, 2-3.

12. Hab 3, 4.

13. Lc 11, 21-22.

14. 1 Cor 1, 25.

15. Mich 3, 8.

16. Is 11, 2-3.

17. Cf. Mt 26, 69-75.

18. Iudic 13, 3-5.

19. Iudic 16, 7.

20. Iudic 16, 11.

21. Iudic 16, 13.

22. Cf. Iudic 16, 17..

23. Heb 11, 33.34.

24. Eph 6, 16.

25. 3 Esd 3, 10-12.

26. Cf. 1 Io 2, 16.

27. Prov 23, 31.

28. Ps 90, 5.

29. 1 Petr 5, 8-9; cf. etiam Breviarium Romanum, ad Completorium, lectio brevis.

30. 2 Par 16, 9.

31. Heb 6, 18.

32. Is 40, 31.

33. Is 40, 29.

34. Cant 8, 6-7.

35. Rom 8, 35.38.

36. Ps 17, 2-3.

37. Ps 26, 1.

38. Prov 10, 4.

39. Prov 31, 19.

40. 3 Reg 1, 42.

41. Is 40, 9.

42. 1 Io 2, 14.

43. 1 Mach 2, 66.

44. Lam 1, 6.

45. Eccli 46, 11.

46. Eccli 46, 1.

47. Cf. Num 13, 7.17.

48. 2 Mach 6, 26-30.

49. Iob 17, 9.

50. Prov 31, 17.

51. Hab 3, 19.


1. Prov 31:10-13.

2. Cant 4:4.

3. Ws 8:1.

4. Cant 3:7.

5. Prov 31:25.

6. Is 50:1.

7. 1 Mac 3:19.

8. Ps 67:36.

9. Prov 18:10.

10. Prov 18:11; cf. 10:15.

11. Is 12:2-3.

12. Hab 3:4.

13. Lk 11:21-22.

14. 1 Cor 1:25.

15. Mich 3:8.

16. Is 11:2-3.

17. Cf. Mt 26:69-75.

18. Jg 13:3-5.

19. Jg 16:7.

20. Jg 16:11.

21. Jg 16:13.

22. Cf. Jg 16:17..

23. Heb 11:33.34.

24. Eph 6:16.

25. 3 Ez 3:10-12.

26. Cf. 1 Io 2:16.

27. Prov 23:31.

28. Ps 90:5.

29. 1 Pt 5:8-9; cf. also Breviarium Romanum, ad Completorium: lectio brevis.

30. 2 Par 16:9.

31. Heb 6:18.

32. Is 40:31.

33. Is 40:29.

34. Cant 8:6-7.

35. Rm 8:35.38.

36. Ps 17:2-3.

37. Ps 26:1.

38. Prov 10:4.

39. Prov 31:19.

40. 3 Kg 1:42.

41. Is 40:9.

42. 1 Jn 2:14.

43. 1 Mac 2:66.

44. Lam 1:6.

45. Eccli 46:11.

46. Eccli 46:1.

47. Cf. Num 13:7.17.

48. 2 Mac 6:26-30.

49. Job 17:9.

50. Prov 31:17.

51. Hab 3:19.


N.B.: Items in square [ ] brackets indicate the Latin term(s) corresponding to the immediately previous English term(s). Items in round ( ) brackets indicate English words added by the English translator for the sake of clarity:usually implicit in the Latin syntax. Principal terms which have consistent signification are indicated with their corresponding Latin term in each first instance; thereafter only when some English or Latin term is diversely or similarly translated, respectively speaking. This English translation has been released to the public domain by its author.