However, we must note that in this privileged milieu (consecrated religious life), man does not have to practice exactly the same virtues, or in the same way….In the family, and still more in the city, he has to cultivate especially the great moral virtues…These compromise the four cardinal virtues of prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance, as has been noted, and the other moral virtues immediately related to them; in a word, all the virtues that develop man’s true human values and prepare him to perform his function in society. These are at once the great human virtues and the great social virtues.
…Gospel virtues: humility, patience, meekness, and so on….consecrate religious life….somewhat lacking in dignity and nobility, they are rightly called the “little” virtues….precisely because of their lowliness and poverty…they have a very close bond with the theological virtues. There is less danger in esteeming them for themselves and stopping at them….They add a tone of sweetness and humility to the moral virtues; they keep them from closing in on themselves and bring a sort of deep aspiration toward God and supernatural realities.
…live in the world but feel impelled to advance further, have an excellent practice…they select some monastery or convent…as a second home—a home for their spiritual life. A few days, or better still a week or more, once or twice a year, when the duties of their calling allow, they withdraw to their second home, their spiritual home, to live the spiritual live more fully and deeply…In short moments wrested from a life of work that is more and more engrossing and agitating, they go back in memory and imagination to that ideal setting of solitude and silence where the Heart of Jesus made itself felt so near, where they tasted the sweetness of His endearments, where Mary, his Mother, was so prodigal of her caresses. The memory of these Holy, familiar places, still perfumed with graces received, helps them to rise above their daily turmoil, to bring a little light and peace to their souls, to dispel the thousand distractions that almost inevitably assail those who can consecrate only a few moments each day to mental prayer. –Father Thomas Philippe, ‘The Fire of Contemplation’