Find accurate definitions of over 5,000 Catholic terms and phrases (including abbreviations). Based on Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.
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The supernatural state of being infused by God, which permanently inheres in the soul. It is a vital principle of the supernatural life, as the rational soul is the vital principle of a human being's natural life. It is not a substance but a real quality that becomes part of the soul substance. Although commonly associated with the possession of the virtue of charity, sanctifuing grace is yet distinct from this virtue. Charity, rather, belongs to the will, whereas sanctifying grace belongs to the whole soul, mind, will, and affections. It is called sanctifying grace because it makes holy those who possess the gift by giving them a participation in the divine life. It is zo_ (life), which Christ taught that he has in common with the Father and which those who are in the state of grace share.See Also: ACTUAL GRACE, See Also: EFFICACIOUS GRACE, See Also: GRACE, See Also: GRATUITOUS GRACE, See Also: HABITUAL GRACE, See Also: JUSTIFYING GRACE, See Also: SACRAMENTAL GRACE, See Also: SANATING GRACE, See Also: SUFFICIENT GRACE