Fr. Dan Pattee: The Cross and Justice

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By Fr. Dan Pattee, Catholic Exchange, April 28, 2022

Fr. Dan Pattee, TOR currently serves as a Parochial Vicar at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Fort Worth, Texas. He previously served for 29 years as a professor of theology at Franciscan University in Steubenville, OH and has been a priest for 35 years and a TOR Franciscan for 41 years.

St. Thomas Aquinas said of justice, “If anyone would reduce it to the proper form of a definition, he might say that ‘justice is a habit whereby a man renders to each one his due by a constant and perpetual will’” (Summa Theologiae II-II, 58, 1). This is good as far as it goes by way of human estimation and the use of reason. St. Thomas is, after all, expounding upon the cardinal virtue of justice, which is an acquired virtue. But the eternal and living Father in His wisdom has transposed justice, giving it a new meaning in loving obedience and a new “locus” of fulfillment beyond the reach of human estimation. The Scriptures bear this out wherein the most wise Father forever places judgment on all matters of justice in the hands of His Son, Jesus Christ, when He raised Him from the dead. …

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