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A Psychotherapy of Virtue: Reections on St.

Thomas Aquinas Theology of Moral Virtue

Frank J. Moncher, Ph.D. Institute for the Psychological Sciences

Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 20(4) pp.332-341 ISSN 0733-4273

Copyright 2001 Christian Association for Psychological Studies

Please address correspondence regarding this article to Frank J. Moncher, Ph.D., Institute for the Psychological Sciences, 2001 Jefferson Davis Highway, Suite 102, Arlington VA 22202. e-mail: fmoncher@ipsciences.edu

Abstract This article explores St. Thomas Aquinas theology of moral virtue, and discusses how it can be an important means for facilitating the improvement of clients with emotional problems. Because psychological health is related to being able to freely choose ones actions, encouraging the exercise of virtue can have benecial effects on an individuals emotional well-being as well as growth in their journey towards holiness. Because the human person is rational, Aquinas emphasizes the superiority of reason over the emotions. Through the exercise of reason, one is able to order their emotions and achieve self-mastery and discipline in the living of a truly good, virtuous, and fully human life. A clinical case is presented which demonstrates the manner in which addressing virtue can be integrated into a standard psychotherapy process

This article will focus on the concept of virtue, and how virtue can play an important role in the improvement of patients who are struggling with emotional or psychological issues, as well as being a means by which the human person responds to the universal call to holiness. Virtue is understood as the power to do the right thing, at the right time, in the right way (Aquinas, 1966). Although patients do not generally identify themselves as needing to improve their virtue when they enter therapy, improvements in their presenting symptoms will inevitably result in an increase in their ability to exercise virtue. In addition, as patients become increasingly free to act and make choices in their lives, encouraging the exercise of virtue can have a dramatic impact on their mental health in terms of self-acceptance and trusting that they are worthy of love. For Christians, virtues are not an end, but a means towards living the fully human life that results in harmony, selfrealization, and true happiness (Hughes, 2000). Psychological health ultimately is related to being able to choose the good, and act in like manner; in other words, natural virtue. What is the good? Thomas Aquinas (1999) states that an individuals good lies in living in accord with reason. Problems ensue when one is prevented from acting towards that which they know is the truly good; prevented by needs, wants, feelings, or passions that compel one towards different goals. Generally, to live in accord with reason three things must exist: First, the individual must know what they are doing; second, the individual must choose deliberately; and third, the individual must act rmly and unwaveringly. Individuals who are suffering from emotional problems may be compromised in one or all three of these areas. In this way, those who are hindered in their ability to know, freely choose, or implement their choices because of psychological illness, are compromised in their ability to demonstrate virtue. Psychological health is thus a prerequisite for being completely free to develop virtue. More importantly, virtue can be utilized in the therapy process with those who ascribe to the Christian doctrine. Virtuous people have acquired certain dispositions which permit them to act to perfection in the moral realm. The acts of virtue, however, are not pure unconscious reexes or sheer habits. Virtuous reexes are the product of two spiritual faculties (i.e., intelligence, will) that the acting person shapes and forms so that
Moncher, A Psychotherapy of Virtue Copyright 2001 Christian Association for Psychological Studies Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 2001, Vol. 20, No. 4, 332-341 ISSN 0733-4272 2

they have transformed these faculties into perfect servants (Pinckaers, 1962). Passions rightly controlled by reason, the intellectually illuminated will, are the occasions of virtue. But when the will permits a disorder in the passions, evil can result. Some may argue that people should not have to develop virtues, but should use their judgment to work out solutions on a case by case basis. However, the problems of living a full life are too involved to be resolved all over again each time they arise (Klubertanz, 1965), so the development of virtue is a huge asset in living a mentally healthy and balanced life. Furthermore, the ability to exercise virtue, and use practical reason in the enterprise, is most important to the study of psychology, because this is that which makes us specically human.

Biography of the theologian and philosopher (from Brunson, 1994; Chesterton, 1956) Thomas of Aquino was born near Naples in 1226 into an aristocratic family, the cousin of the Holy Roman Emperor. His parents suspected that he might be suited to life in a cloistered monastery, and had his education begun with Benedictine monks. However, instead of traditional monastic life, Thomas joined the Order of the Friars Preachers, a new monastic order. His familys disdain for his choice of the Dominicans was such that his brothers kidnapped him at the request of their mother, and had him secluded in a tower, making multiple efforts to persuade him to join a more suitable order. Thomas resolve was rm, however, and legend has it that members of the Church hierarchy or perhaps his sisters eventually assisted him in gaining freedom. Following his release, Thomas spent time in Rome, and then France where he studied with Albert Magnus (the Great), who recognized his intellectual prowess and potential as a leader. Thomas worked with St. Albert to assist in the dialogue occurring within the Church about Aristotles writings. His main goal was to defend the Faith against attacks coming from the then popular understanding of Aristotelian philosophy. Rather than attempting to eliminate Aristotles ideas, Thomas boldly defended the faith by supporting the use of the truth evident in Aristotle, demonstrating its consistency with orthodox Christian thought. In the process of speaking out against heresies, Thomas traveled a great deal, becoming well-known in Paris and the German Universities. Throughout his life he continued to study and write, supporting and defending Church teachings, until his accidental death on a journey intending to continue in kind.

The Principle of Virtue Among the many philosophical and theological concepts of Thomas Aquinas which are relevant for psychology, this article will focus on the concepts developed in Aquinas works on virtue and habit: Summa
Moncher, A Psychotherapy of Virtue Copyright 2001 Christian Association for Psychological Studies Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 2001, Vol. 20, No. 4, 332-341 ISSN 0733-4272 3

Theologiae I-II, Questions 49-70 (Aquinas, 1966), and Disputed Questions on Virtue (Aquinas, 1999). Before exploring virtue in detail, however, one must understand Aquinas perspective on both the rational nature and the emotional life of the human person, and how each of these provides a foundation from which one can understand how living a virtuous life is not only possible, but essential in achieving true happiness and the epitome of psychological health. The place of reason as the superior ordering concept in man is essential to Aquinas teaching related to psychology. Aquinas asserted that both revealed truth and rational thought are not only compatible, but that it would be impossible for them to be in conict, because they both originate from the same ultimate source. Virtue is natural to man in an incipient state to his specic nature insofar as certain naturally known principles in regard to both thought and action are in mans reason naturally and there is in the will a certain natural appetite for good in conformity with reason (Aquinas, 1966). Similarly, Aquinas states that all of our emotions are good and necessary for healthy living. Although we may act badly under their inuence, emotions themselves are not inherently disordered. Virtue thus stems from the control and employment of emotion (see qq. 22 to 48 of the Summa, for complete treatment of the passions). Because of their ability to motivate and energize, the cultivation of emotions in developing virtue is as important as the education of reason and the strengthening of the will. Virtue is that disposition or perfection in sense appetite by which it easily obeys reason (Aquinas, 1999), and is an inclination toward the doing of the good actions commanded or permitted by the moral law, and the avoiding of the evil actions forbidden by the moral law (in Pinckaers, 1962, p. 68). Aquinas further states that virtue is a habitus operative of the good. There is a natural tendency to translate this phrase into the modern language usage of habit, which is not the same as virtue. The difculty is, that while both habit and virtue share some supercial similarity [e.g., both are stable, surely successful and consistent dispositions, make for ease of acting, and allow acting with joy from not resisting an inclination], habit creates an automatic action which diminishes the moral tone of the action (Klubertanz, 1965; Pinckaers, 1962). That is, an action performed on the basis of habit does not retain the participation of reason nor the engagement of free will, and thus to a certain extent deprives people of their full human worth. Virtue possesses a creative power, which surpasses any mere repetition of material acts, allowing the persons reason and will to achieve their maximum capacity on the moral plane. In psychological terms, what can be behaviorally trained through well-known reinforcement and punishment principles does not necessarily lead to the most healthy outcome. In fact, mere development of habit with no real compass can actually lead to psychological dysfunction, whereas virtue makes the one who possesses it good and renders good his work (Pinckaers, 1962). We must note that some habits are related to evil, as in the case of habits of vice but virtue is always related to good (Aquinas, 1966). For example, placement of money in the collection plate can indeed be a virtuous act, though it can easily become an habitual and
Moncher, A Psychotherapy of Virtue Copyright 2001 Christian Association for Psychological Studies Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 2001, Vol. 20, No. 4, 332-341 ISSN 0733-4272 4

meaningless response without the exercise of virtue. In summary, virtue is a rm disposition to do the good and choose the good in concrete actions, and the more we acquire these strengths, the less we must struggle with ourselves to do what we choose, resulting in the true joy of virtuous living. Four Cardinal Virtues. The properly lived human life consists in the exercise of the moral virtues (Aquinas, 1999). Since the time of Socrates, western philosophers have largely agreed that there are four principal or cardinal moral virtues: Prudence, Justice, Temperance, and Fortitude (Pieper, 1965). These virtues are cardinal in the sense that they are the hinge on which hangs, the door through which one enters into a truly human life, a life lived according to human nature (Ashley, 1995). Virtue has things to say about (a) human person; it speaks of the kind of being which is his when he enters the world and the kind of being he ought to strive toward and attain toby being prudent, just, brave and temperate (Pieper, 1965, p. xii). Every virtuous act must be done with directive knowledge, rightness, stability, and moderation, though each virtue has a special importance in certain matters (Aquinas, 1999). The cardinal virtues thus deal with the most important of problems, and perfect the psychological powers of human persons. The cardinal virtue which is most easily distinguished from the others is that of prudence (Aquinas, 1966). Prudence is involved in the capacity to reason. Through prudence, we are able not only to judge rightly but also to command ourselves to actually execute our judgments. Moral virtue cannot exist without the virtue of prudence. The other cardinal virtues require its input to determine what is the good in the here and now situation; it involves a search for and judgment of the way to achieve the end of the other virtues (McInerny, 1999). The other cardinal virtues imply a certain participation with reason by applying reason to appetites (i.e., emotions) or acts (Aquinas, 1966). Justice involves the will, being the ability to consider the state of another when confronting a situation. The other two cardinal virtues are concerned with areas of direct interest for psychology: drives, emotions, and passions (Klubertanz, 1962). Temperance involves the concupiscible appetite (or drives for pleasure). Its exercise involves moderation, especially in matters where a passion is compulsive, and reason must restrain oneself so that the middle course is maintained (Ashley, 1995). Fortitude involves the irascible appetite (or aggressive drive), and the exercise of this virtue allows for one to remain rm in situations where fear or anxiety might lead one to avoid responding or ee. The cardinal virtues are not completely distinct, however, and the existence [or lack] of one virtue in an individual impacts the ability to exercise another. The reason for the connection of the virtues is apparent, for rmness is not commended as virtuous if it is without moderation or rectitude or discretion (Aquinas, 1966). For example, temperance does not consist in eating only so many ounces of food daily, but in eating a suitable amount, such an amount as can only be determined by the intellect, using the virtue of prudence (i.e., considering ones health, circumstances, etc.). Furthermore, Aquinas believes that the deterioration of one

Moncher, A Psychotherapy of Virtue Copyright 2001 Christian Association for Psychological Studies Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 2001, Vol. 20, No. 4, 332-341 ISSN 0733-4272 5

power of the soul should be healed and supplemented by the still undamaged core of some other power (e.g., quenching the limp intemperateness of an unchaste lustfulness by attacking a difcult task with the resilient joy generated in the full power of wrath) (Klubertanz, 1965).

Application to Clinical Work In the psychotherapeutic process, the most reasonable focus is on that which makes us most human: practical reason and the related ability to make choices, which either strengthen, or weaken, our self-mastery and moral virtue. From this articles perspective, the goals of therapy can generally be described as (1) management of emotional life, (2) so one can better live in community, leading towards (3) the building of virtue. The ultimate goal is the ability to live the morally good life, which is to say, a happy, fullling life. Managing emotions. A person whose life is dictated by emotions is not guided by that which is distinctive of human beings, namely, reason. Reason puts the pleasures and pains to which we respond emotionally into relation with our integral good (Aquinas, 1999). However, individuals often need to learn how to utilize their reason to direct and control their appetites or emotions. Any therapeutic activity which seeks to free persons from negative feelings must be accompanied by a sensitivity to the circumstances surrounding the affect, and how correct reason has or has not been utilized. For example, in therapy with an individual who comes to treatment complaining of feelings of guilt and depression, it is essential to determine if the guilt is from a real, that is, true wrong (I had an abortion) versus a wrong imposed from a mere social convention (I only call my mother once a week); in addition, for real guilt, there must be a willingness to pursue themes of forgiveness and reparation, and if and how reconciliation has been sought with God becomes an important issue. Training our emotions to respond to the direction of reason is a most difcult task. Its achievement is called virtue (McInerny, 1999). Living in community. Another goal of therapy and improved psychological health is to help persons live in community (Robinson, 1997). If therapy has as its goal providing beneciaries with the means to a better life, then, the aims must include an understanding of the person assessed in terms of the contributions made to others. What history teaches is that those who scorn traditional virtues justice, temperance, or fortitudebecome stunted and solitary. They fail to excite respect and affection; their friendships are counterfeit, lasting only as long as others nd them useful or fearful (Robinson, 1997). Thus, a clear indication of progress in clinical work is growth in the patients ability to selessly consider the good of others in their life. Building virtue. Clinically, most patients are suffering psychologically from a restriction in their ability to choose freely. Therefore, the exercise of moral virtue on a regular basis cannot be realistically expected. However, virtuous outward behavior can have a strengthening or weakening impact on the inner order of the
Moncher, A Psychotherapy of Virtue Copyright 2001 Christian Association for Psychological Studies Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 2001, Vol. 20, No. 4, 332-341 ISSN 0733-4272 6

patient. It is from this point of view that all practice of outer discipline obtains its meaning, its justication, and its necessity, in the growth and healing of emotional illness. Neurotic behavior is behavior that is nonfree; compulsively consistent; motivated by fear, anxiety, or some similar emotion; not rationally successful in solving a problem, though concretely effective in reducing psychological needs. Once it has become habitual, there is much less opportunity to practice virtuous behavior. But suppose education has taken place, so that the person comes to see personally that there are other ways of solving his problem; then he is in a position of being able to help himselfto acquire virtue. (Klubertanz, 1965, p. 263-4). A person must take positive steps to prevent an habitual, poor action from recurring. The virtues are by their nature inclined to action, so it is impossible to utilize a merely negative position to acquire virtue. For example, while an intemperate person, whose intemperance occurs in a certain place, may usefully avoid that place, if the object is not avoidable but within himself, he cannot avoid it by telling himself not to think about it, as this will in effect cause him to rst think of it (e.g., as can occur in cases of scrupulosity) (Klubertanz, 1965). The therapist, through careful conscious reports obtained through empathically listening in an effort to understand a patient, may be able to assist an individual in their conception and understanding of their interior life. Through temperance, ones desires are not excessive and his impulses are controlled. Through courage, he can face his failures instead of hiding from them; he can remain calm under difculty and so solve his problems in an objectively, rationally successful way (Klubertanz, 1965, p. 263-4). The therapist, however, must remember that the patient must play the principal role in the therapeutic process. Any inordinate impositions by the therapist may weaken the person to a point where they can no longer grow. The power of an educator can be conceived of as placing oneself at the service of the personal development of those who have been conded to your care (Pinckaers, 1962, p. 81), and assisting them in understanding how his action can be generalized in different ways, to become closer to the ideal of universal goodness (Klubertanz, 1965). A similar role might be recommended to the therapist. The process of a psychotherapy of virtue is as follows: The therapist begins by addressing the psychological or emotional problem that is inhibiting the individuals ability to freely choose the good in their lives. Many of the standard techniques that have been proven effective in treatment of emotional disturbance can be utilized, so long as they are consistent with the inherent dignity of the human person and moral virtues being pursued. As therapy progresses and the patient becomes more free of their troubles, the notion of virtue is then introduced, and the specic virtues related to the problem are explained and their exercise encouraged. Although perfect exercise of virtue is not expected at this stage, it is important for the patient to begin to practice and become familiar both with the idea of virtue as well as how it is applicable to their life. Through their efforts to practice virtue, positive habits will begin to develop, at least externally, and as the therapy progresses
Moncher, A Psychotherapy of Virtue Copyright 2001 Christian Association for Psychological Studies Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 2001, Vol. 20, No. 4, 332-341 ISSN 0733-4272 7

and barriers are removed, the truer, interior acts will be maturing. It is essential for the clinician to monitor the development and ensure that the patient is not merely developing an automatic response (i.e., make sure that reason, through prudence, is exercised in decision making), nor that an intellectual virtue is being developed (in itself, a positive skill) without the guidance of the moral virtues, the danger here being that this could lead to skillful operation of immoral or unhealthy behavior. Finally , it should be noted that the work of striving to become virtuous is difcult. The difculty arises from the intensity of effort which it often requires to make the correct acts. Pain occurs because one is still in a state of imperfect virtue; if ones state of virtue were perfect, they would experience pleasure, not pain, in practicing virtue (Oesterle, 1966; Klubertanz, 1965). Furthermore, patients can become discouraged if they are not aware that the practice of virtue, initially, will not feel good, though they should be given the hope that with attainment of the perfection of virtue, by denition, they will be attaining a good, which will be more beautiful than can be imagined, and will in time increase their contentment. Truly virtuous living is exceedingly joyous living, because it is the real power to live consistently with our deepest choices. Case Example. Joe and Mary come for therapy concerned about their marital relationship and struggling with raising their three children, particularly the youngest, a 4 year old girl, Beth. The parents report that they are having a difcult time controlling Beth, who was a colicky baby and has had multiple health problems in her young life. Joe and Mary have been married several years, and report that their two older boys appear to be developing well, having bonded with both parents, and being particularly close to their mother who states that she has no trouble in parenting them. Mary was physically abused by her mother during her own childhood, and states that she is now afraid of abusing Beth. She reports that at times she becomes so frustrated and angry with Beth, that she feels like throwing her against the wall. When reecting on her relationship with her own mother, she reports that she felt as if she could never please her, and was never good enough in my mothers eyes in anything she tried to do. Marys growing irritability with Beth is also impacting the marital relationship, as Joe is seeing a side of her of which he was previously unaware. Joe gives a history of coming from a good family in which there was little conict, and with whom he remains fairly close. Mary interjects, however, that Joes mother was an alcoholic and that she has recently begun to feel very criticized and unwanted by his family, with whom she now avoids contact. Joe is upset by this change in how she is relating to his parents, as well as by the mean, nasty remarks that he reports Mary has been making. Joe alludes to being at the end of his rope and possibly considering leaving if things do not improve. Therapy begins with a clear focus on the psychological issues that are manifest in the familys functioning. Because of Marys disclosure regarding her painful personal history, and her openness to therapy,

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individual sessions are scheduled to help free her from the emotional distress which appears to be preventing her from showing the same temperate, just patience with her daughter that she had been able to do so successfully with her sons. Exploration of her past memories and feelings results in Marys realization that her intense emotional reaction when unable to comfort her daughters distress is related to her feeling of never being able to please her mother either. Grieving the loss of obtaining her mothers nurturing love, and realizing that she may experience some healing when able to provide her own daughter that love, frees Mary to choose to love Beth unencumbered by the emotional reactivity from her own life experiences. With these issues in the process of becoming resolved, the focus of treatment shifts to the current problems in Marys interactions with Beth: the inability to control her temper. Joe is now invited to join the sessions, as Marys anger problem was identied not only in the relationship with her daughter but also her husband. The couple is educated about the ultimate goal of the therapy as helping both spouses grow in love of each other and their children, and that for this to occur, each will have to embark on an effort of building moral virtues in their lives (for Mary, Temperance in her emotions; for Joe, Justice in his honoring his marital commitment by making a decision to choose Mary in difcult times instead of tacitly joining his parents negative comments). It should be noted that the therapeutic process is a uid one in which the psychological and the virtue aspects are moved between as issues resurface or new issues arise. The building of virtue is presented as generally the notion of putting anothers need before ones own. Journaling and cognitive behavioral techniques are utilized to assist Mary in engaging her ability to use her reason (or rational powers) to place her emotional reactions in context and to identify unhealthy patterns which she can then break. The long-term benet of developing Prudence is also explored, as parents will be faced with difcult decisions regarding how to raise their children as they grow through adolescence; having the ability to prudently discern what is best for a child, without being overwhelmed by ones own emotional reaction, becomes more important as children grow, and decisions to be made do not always follow a rigid, precise standard but must be prudently discerned given the context and the particular child involved. Joe is helped to see that manifesting his disappointment with his wife by comparing her with her own past results from focusing on his own needs and expectations. The antidote for which is a more virtuous, that is seless and generous, attitude towards her to which he is called. As the spouses parenting issues began resolving, the focus shifted to the marital relationship. The therapist modeled virtue through empathic listening, and teaching the skills necessary for the couple to focus on the others need before focusing on their own. Although initially each spouse was rather stilted in their effort to respond empathically, the practicing of the skill, they saw developing the virtues as a valuable step. Care was exercised that the skill itself was utilized in a framework that emphasized a focus on building love through Justice and Prudence in any comments made. Eventually, as each began to trust that the other would truly make an effort at understanding their point of view, the courage (i.e., Fortitude) they manifested in taking
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the risk to begin this process and openly share their feelings with each other was rewarded. Mary was able to communicate and have understood her need for Joes support in the face of any comments made by his family about her, and Joe was able to acknowledge more openly the imperfections of his own family of origin, and more freely choose his relationship with his wife as primary.

Conclusion The ultimate goal of a psychotherapy of virtue is to allow one to attain the fullness of life that is our natural destiny, unencumbered by disorder. True happiness can be approached more closely as one is more able to freely choose virtuous acts without the obstacles from reactivity that can arise when emotions are controlling us, instead of properly informing our reason in the decision making process. Our fallen human nature resists this path, thus, psychological growth is best seen as a lifelong process, not as a destination that is achieved and then permanent. Ultimate fulllment will only come in union with our God, towards which the virtues dispose all the powers of a human being. The happiness which is proportioned to mans nature, and obtainable by means of a mans natural capacities, is the happiness to which the moral and intellectual virtues are immediately ordered; man is directed ultimately and primarily to a happiness surpassing the capacity of human nature, and obtainable from God alone (Oesterle, 1966, p. xvi). The cardinal virtues free the human person from undue attachment to temporal values, facilitating ones openness to the theological virtues, faith, hope, and love, by which the human person attains direct contact with the living God (Ashley, 1999). It is thus in a persons capacity to produce from within themselves and to invent perfect actions, that they show themselves to be in the image of God the Creator (Pinckaers, 1962): Be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good, pleasing, and perfect (Romans 12:2, NAB).

References Aquinas, T. (1999). Disputed questions on virtues. (R. McInerny, Trans.). South Bend, IN: St. Augustines Press. Aquinas, T. (1966). Treatise on the virtues (J. A. Oesterle, Trans.). Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press. Ashley, B. (1995). Thomas Aquinas: The gifts of the spirit. New York: New City Press. Brunson, M. (1994). Angelic doctor: The life and world of St. Thomas Aquinas. Huntington, IN: Our Sunday Visitor.
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Chesterton, G.K. (1956). Saint Thomas Aquinas The Dumb Ox. New York: Image Books Doubleday. Hughes, J. (2000, March). The integration of cognitive behavioral therapy and Christian humanism. Paper presented at Boston chapter of the Society of Catholic Social Scientists, Newport, R.I. Klubertanz, G. P. (1965). Habits and virtues: A philosophical analysis. New York: Meredith Publishing. McInerny, R. (1999). Preface. In T. Aquinas, Disputed questions on virtues. (R. McInerny, Trans.). (pp. vii-xix). South Bend, IN: St. Augustines Press. Oesterle, J.A. (1966). Introduction. In T. Aquinas, Treatise on the virtues (J. A. Oesterle Trans.). (pp. xiii-xvii). Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press. Pieper, J. (1965). Four cardinal virtues: Prudence, justice, fortitude, temperance. New York: Harcourt, Brace and World. Pinckaers, S. (1962). Virtue is not a habit. (Trans. Bernard Gilligan). Cross Currents, 12, 65-81. Robinson, D.N. (1997). Therapy as theory and as civics. Theory and Psychology, 7(5), 675-681. Sutton, P. M. (1995). Personalist themes in the applied Thomistic psychology of Anna Terruwe and Conrad Baars. In J. Dubois (ed.) The nature and tasks of a personalist psychology. Lanhan, MD: University Press of America.

Author Notes Frank J. Moncher completed the Ph.D. in Clinical-Community Psychology from the University of South Carolina. An Assistant Professor at the Institute for the Psychological Sciences in Arlington, VA, Dr. Monchers teaches psychotherapy and assessment, and his research interests include the integration of Catholic thought and psychotherapy, and child and family developmental issues. I would like to thank the following individuals for their help during the research and writing of this article: Thomas Berg, LC, Romanus Cessario, OP, Thomas Cronquist, Francis Fusco, Stephen Grundman, William J. Nordling, Daniel Robinson, Phillip Sutton, and Gladys Sweeney.

Moncher, A Psychotherapy of Virtue Copyright 2001 Christian Association for Psychological Studies Journal of Psychology and Christianity, 2001, Vol. 20, No. 4, 332-341 ISSN 0733-4272 11