Everyone knows you need to master arithmetic before you’re ready to tackle algebra. That concept is true for the vast majority of learning in life; you need to establish a solid foundation of the basics before you’re prepared for advanced study. Yet so many of us fallen human beings believe we’re ready to accelerate our spiritual growth with very little attention to shoring up our lives at the natural level first.
St. Thomas Aquinas is well-known for saying that “grace perfects nature; it does not destroy it.” That implies that our spiritual growth is based on a natural foundation, which often needs to be healed, strengthened and understood before it is ready to accept all the spiritual gifts God has prepared for us.
What is human formation from a Catholic perspective? It is a lifelong process of natural development, supported by God’s grace, that allows us to integrate our emotional, cognitive, relational, and bodily life in an ordered way. Human formation is conformed with right reason and natural law so that we are freed from natural impediments to trust God and embrace His love. It allows us to know and possess ourselves, which helps us love God, neighbor, and ourselves. Human formation allows us to live out the two great commandments.
Read more about human formation at Souls and Hearts. Our outreach focuses on providing the best of human formation, grounded in a Catholic understanding of the human person -- for Catholics in all walks of life.