Formation for Moral Transformation

Towards Moral transformation of the person

Credibility of a person largely depends on his moral integrity which is manifested in his/her capacity to “walk the talk”. Clergy scandals have caused much damage to the credibility of Church personnel. Formation in the moral dimension effects what Lonergan calls “moral conversion”. It is the clarification and elimination of the view that satisfaction is the same as value [1]. It is also the discovery for ourselves of what is good and right. This applies not just to decisions, but also to action.

“Moral transformation challenges the person to move from simple gratification of immediate personal needs to living by consistent principles of ethics and justice. Essential to this type of transformation is a formed conscience based on Chris­tian moral principles. Subsequently, it involves the capacity to deal with moral dilemmas and challenges faced in everyday life. Ongoing transformation requires that the individual grasps the practical consequences of dedication to the common good as well as develop the requisite moral virtues. It also re­quires an increasing capacity to criticize false value systems that corrupt Christian conscience”.- Len Sperry

Moral transformation is facilitated by the following virtues, self-capacities and spiritual practices.


Trustworthiness: The disposition that enables one to relate to others with honesty, fairness, truthfulness, loyalty, dependability and humility.

Fidelity: It ensures treating those to whom one is closely related, i.e., community members, friends, parishioners, ministry groups, etc., with special care and concern.

Spiritual practices:

living ethically: practicing right actions, giving up gossip, practicing truthfulness, confession and making amends

Self capacities:

Commitment: The capacity to commit to a personal, commu­nity, or career goal or to a relationship and then to persevere in that commitment.

Intimacy: The capacity to express the self fully in a close relationship with minimal anxiety or fears of rejection.

[1] Lonergan Bernard, Method in Theology, p. 240.