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modesty and moderation

Hold on to modesty and moderation because it adds beauty to our whole life.  For he acts nobly who preserves due measure and order in his life.  This is decorum and is closely connected with virtue.  For what is seemly is virtuous and what is virtuous is seemly.   

Virtue is like the health and soundness of the body; decorum is like the beauty of the body.  Beauty seems to stand out more than health but, in truth, beauty depends on health.  Thus, decorum is noticed first, but it depends for its existence on virtue.  

Virtue, therefore, is health in mind and heart and soul; it is health in our good works and undertakings.  Decorum is what is noticed outside, which is conspicuous, but it had its roots in virtue.  Rooted in virtue, decorum flourished and even bears its own flower; separated from virtue, it fails, droops and disappears into uncouthness.  

A priest must be clothed well.  When God made the first man, He created him with a good figure and a noble appearance.  "Let all things be done decently and in order."  Women are told to "dress properly" and "cover their heads" and to pray with promises of purity and good conversation.  

St. Ambrose: Duties of the Clergy, Chapter 45 







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