Counties of the Holy Spirit

7-gifts-banner-copy-copyIt’s a state with counties familiar to us. The name may live within you, making it your “state of mind”.

The northern county in this state is called “Courage” for its brute strength, often vengeful whose county symbol is bulging biceps and tight thighs. Fortunately, “Patience” is the neighboring county which often smiles at Courage’s laws, practices and bar hours. Courage’s only reflection is the morning mirror.

“Fortitude” county is on the opposite side of the state and brags of her gentle persistence and a nod to her sister county, “Hope” which can live fancifully in your mind or can ennoble your faith. Fortitude passed a resolution inviting Courage residents to visit a china store and lift just one object, hold it and then return it to the shelve. Fortitude never heard back.

Below Fortitude is “Wisdom” county which is the state’s oldest and has the lowest unemployment rate. It’s not that Wisdom is that smart but it’s deeper than smart; experiences yield lessons, some small and others that enlarge life.

“Counsel” lies at the bottom of the state asking questions only to receive a new question, just like a rabbi would do. This forces Courage to either rephrase his question or ask a new, clearer one.

In the center of the state is “Understanding” which hasn’t had an easy time of it. Industry’s left and service jobs are now the offerings to its population. She wants to live up to her county’s name and holds out for a dialogue with all the counties.

Directly below Understanding lands “Knowledge,” the state’s second oldest county. Knowledge has so much of it that it appears the other counties are either jealous or just don’t care about history or its past or what he can teach the other counties. It’s a lonely county, mostly older folks sitting on storefront benches throwing dates back and forth to see who remembers the most.

The state’s tiniest county is “Piety,” it’s somewhere in the lower left of the state but I’m not sure of that. Folks there seem to gather in structures with a steeple on top. The “steeple” baffles Courage county because a flat roof would have been cheaper. Neighbors hear singing throughout the day, especially on Sundays. Why Sunday? I’m don’t know because that’s the perfect day to sleep-in with a Bloody Mary at (or for!) lunch.

Oh, I forgot to mention the name of the state. It’s called “Awe.” Folks throughout the state constantly wonder what they’re “awing” about or for but Awe is their name.

I wonder if those counties could have a state (or “state of mind”) meeting. Is that asking too much?

Books by Fr. Joe Jagodensky, SDS.
Available at
“Soulful Musings”
“Living Faith’s Mysteries”
“Spiritual Wonderings and Wanderings”

About Rev. Joe Jagodensky, SDS.

A Roman Catholic priest since 1980 and a member of the Society of the Divine Savior (Salvatorians). Six books on the Catholic church and U.S. culture are available on
This entry was posted in Spirituality. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.