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Christian Morality


Course Goals: copied from the Diocese of LaCrosse



Endowed with intelligence and will, man is “made to the image and likeness of God.” Although everyone

possesses this image by nature, the perfection of the image in our soul is only possible by grace, and is finally

completed in glory. To share more and more in the image and likeness of God means that we know and love

Him more deeply. The Christian life is a combat against sin strengthened by grace that allows us one day to

know and love Him perfectly in Heaven. While revelation teaches the moral law in its perfection, the precepts of

that law are founded on human nature, and evident to reason.




While the moral law is present in the heart of everyone, everyone does not see its precepts clearly and

immediately. “[S]inful man needs grace and revelation so moral and religious truth may be known by everyone

with facility, with firm certainty and no admixture of error” (CCC 1960). This class should assist the student to

have a well-formed conscience. “The education of conscience is indispensable for human beings who are

subjected to negative influences and tempted by sin to prefer their own judgment and to reject authoritative

teachings” (CCC 1783; cf. n.2039).



In the modern age, many look to science to solve the problems that confront humanity. But modern science

cannot teach us about right and wrong. Indeed, “[s]cience and technology are ordered to man, from whom they

take their origin and development; hence they find in the person and in his moral values both evidence of their

purpose and awareness of their limits” (CCC 2293). Indeed, for technological progress to help man, it must be

“at the service of the human person, of his inalienable rights, of his true and integral good, in conformity with the

plan and the will of God” (CCC 2294).


Place in the overall curriculum

Since we are made to God's image, in so far as the image implies knowing and loving God, after the Creed has

been explained, which gives an account of the Triune God, it is fitting to treat of His image, i.e., man, who has

knowledge and free-will. “The dignity of the human person is rooted in his creation in the image and likeness of

God; it is fulfilled in his vocation to divine beatitude” (CCC 1700).



The greatest impediment to receiving Christian morality is the error common in our times of “moral relativism.”

According to this view, there is no truth in the realm of morality, no set of standards by which we can judge. A

variant of this is “cultural relativism,” where right and wrong are social determinations, and cannot be judged by

human nature or Divine Revelation.

Further, moral teaching demands life experience for complete comprehension. This is precisely what young

people lack. Consequently, they approach the moral life more from what they imagine to be the case than from

what they actually know. They struggle to understand the long-term consequences of bad behavior, or the long

term benefits of good behavior.

Finally, many young people receive minimal moral instruction in the home. Consequently, the language of

morality is often strange to them.



  1. The Moral Life and the Human Soul

Must one be good if one wants to be truly happy?

  1. Happiness & the Beatitudes: “The beatitudes respond to the natural desire for happiness. Through

the Beatitudes, Jesus teaches that true happiness is very different from the way that the world

conceives it, e.g. the attainment of money, fame, health, or pleasure.

(CCC 1718, 2541, 27, 355-356, 1024, 1700, 1439, 2764)

  1. Will & Free Choice: Happiness is not the result of chance, but of choice. We must make the right

choices to be happy (CCC 1731).

  1. Human Passions: Happiness involves the feelings, but it is more than a feeling. Further, if we act

rightly, our feelings will fall into line with our choices. But our feelings are not by themselves

guides to right action (CCC 1768).


  1. The Ten Commandments and the Moral Law

How should we then live?

  1. The First Tablet – Love of God: Charity first of all directs to the love of God, who should be

loved above all else.

  1. Worship of the One God: God alone is to be worshipped. This is a duty that concerns men

not only individually but also socially (CCC 2105).

  1. Reverence for His Name: We should do nothing to injure the honor due to God, His Church

or the Saints. “God’s name is holy, and we should not abuse it”

(CCC n.2143).

  1. Honor for the Lord’s Day: By dedicating Sunday as a day of worship of God and charitable

work, we remember the gifts of our creation and redemption.

  1. The Second Tablet – Love of Neighbor
  2. Loving one’s neighbor in action
  • Respect for our parents: After God, we must honor and obey those who gave us

life and nurture (CCC 2197). The Fourth Commandment also requires us to obey

secular and religious authorities who govern for the benefit of the common good

(CCC 2234).

  • Respect for life: Life is a gift from God, and no private person can take another

person’s life on his own authority through murder, abortion, euthanasia etc. Neither

can any person take his own life (CCC 2268-2281).

  • Respect for marriage and family: God has given us the ability to share in His

creative work through the marital union. Human sexuality is ordered to sacramental

marriage (CCC 2360-2362, 2348-2350). This union mystically signifies the union

of Christ and His Church (cf. Pope John Paul II, “Theology of the Body”).

  • Respect for property: External goods (land, house, clothes) are a means for us to

care for our neighbors in need and ourselves (CCC 2401).


Loving one’s neighbor in speech

  • Respect for the truth: The truth is a common good that belongs to each and every

man. We must not lie, even for the sake of a “good intention” (CCC 2464, 1753).

Loving one’s neighbor from the heart

  • Freeing the heart from lust: Jesus teaches us not only to refrain from lustful actions,

but even lustful thoughts (Mt. 5:28; CCC 2518).

  • Freeing the heart from greed: The Beatitudes teach us that our happiness lies not in

external goods: “Where your heart is, there is your treasure also”

(Mt. 6:21; CCC 2534).


III. The Foundation and Final End of God’s Law

How is human nature the basis for the moral law? How does grace allow us to come to perfect happiness

in God? How does sin prevent this happiness?

  1. Human Nature and the Moral Law: The moral law is the standard for making right choices. It is

called the “natural law” when it refers to the way the law is written on every human heart

(CCC 1955-1956). It is called “divine law” when we describe how that law is revealed in Scripture,

both in the Old and New Testaments (CCC 1952). The moral law finds its ultimate source in the

Eternal Law of God (CCC 1951-1952).

  1. Grace: Obedience to God’s law is impossible without God’s assistance. Grace is our participation

in God’s life, and allows us to follow Him (CCC 1997).

  1. Sin: Willful disobedience to God’s law is called “sin” (CCC 1849-1850). Sin gives the illusion of

happiness without lasting joy or peace (CCC 1723).


  1. Moral Judgment

How does one apply the moral law to one’s own actions?

  1. Conscience & Law: The judgment of conscience depends on the moral law. Conscience is an

application of the moral law – one does not “create” the law: “Deep within his conscience man

discovers a law which he has not laid upon himself but which he must obey” (CCC 1776).

  1. Components of Moral Choice: The components of a moral choice are the object, the intention and

the circumstances (CCC 1750-1754). “A morally good act requires the goodness of the object, of

the end, and of the circumstances together (CCC 1755).

  1. Proportional Goods and Evils: “It is an error to judge the morality of human acts by considering

only the intention that inspires them or the circumstances (environment, social pressure, duress or

emergency, etc.) which supply their context. …One may not do evil so that good may result from

it” (CCC 1756).


  1. Love and Friendship

Why are friendship and community necessary for happiness?

  1. Friendship and Society are essential for man’s perfection and happiness (CCC 1879, 1936). Bad

friendships lead people away from the right path (CCC 1868-1869).


  1. Supernatural Charity: “Charity is the theological virtue by which we love God above all things

for His own sake, and our neighbor as ourselves for the love of God” (CCC 1822).

  1. The Order of Charity: “God has willed that, after Him, we should honor our parents to whom we

owe life and who have handed on to us the knowledge of God” (CCC 2197, see Ephesians 6:1-3).   

Grading/Evaluation Policy:

The grading scale is as follows:

93% A

90% A-

88% B+

82% B

80% B-

78% C+

72% C

70% C-

68% D+

60% D


54% F


Approximate points & percentages: 


  1. Quizzes and Final ……………………………………..….35%      
  2. Unit Projects ……………………………...….20%      
  3. Articles  …………..………..………………….15%
  4. Participation      …………………………………….……5%
  5. Homework ..………………………….…………10% 
  6. Journal     ……………………………..………………….10%
  7. The Mass discussions notes…………………………………....5%   



  1. You arrive on time
  2. You are attentive (not doing other class work)
  3. You have an open mind!
  4. You put your phone in the door or I will keep it until the end of the day
  5. You don’t cheat; academic dishonesty of any form will result in a zero at a minimum (refer to the RHS Handbook that you signed stating you will adhere to the code of conduct).
  6. All homework is due on the due date (sounds ridiculous, but it needs to be emphasized!). Any work turned in AFTER the due date will have a penalty:  2 points deducted per calendar day with a maximum of 7 days.  After seven days, I will not accept the assignment and a zero will be earned.


Signs from God:  https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLE7Z-fAxsu8ciPgMbNaIe-lDAUMJL5h8n


The Supper of the Lamb:  http://www.ewtn.com/series/lamb/episodes.htm



SMP Liturgical Calendar:


MASS: https://www.smp.org/resourcecenter/category/Mass/4/





​SECTION One: Obedience to God's Will ​

SECTION Two: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JxO6Ub0Kuuw  Our Commitment to God

SECTION Three: Following God's Will https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fcqupIRRtdk

SECTION Four: It's Never too late to claim Chastity https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NxBRJW46BcQ SECTION Five:  ​The Wise old Man on the porch https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eF5iwrVRpq8

Learning Today, Leading Tomorrow

Regis Catholic Schools is dedicated to educating students of all faiths in a Catholic, Christ-centered environment. We are united by Our Core Values of Living Faith, Accepting Responsibility, Promoting Teamwork, Achieving Excellence, and Inspiring Leadership.