Faith is the foundation of all of the other virtues. This is why Balma's depiction of the virtue is located at the entrance of the building. A family sits together peacefully beneath the golden sun. The sun provides energy to all living things and although we cannot gaze directly at it, we believe in its power. The family represents love and commitment. The child holds a small goldfinch, a Christian symbol for Christ because of its tendency to make nests from the seeds of the thorny thistle. The overall theme of this fresco is creation, and illustrated by the Native American teaching of the tortoise volunteering his back as a place for the people to live when there was no land.
On Oct. 20, 1994, an open house was held to celebrate the completion of the Frescoes of St. Thomas. Seven community members were invited to comment about what each panel meant to him or her, personally.
The Rev. Donald Meisel, pastor emeritus of Westminster Presbyterian Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota spoke on the "Faith" panel:
"On a personal note: A 16-by-12 representation of the face of faith was given to me a year ago by the university in recognition of my having offered the invocation at the dedication of the first half of the fresco ceiling. My wife, Eleanor, had it beautifully framed. It watches over me at my desk every day. What does that face say to me? It says that faith is the conviction, the awareness that something of God is in every human face. Faith is the belief that: Faith is the conviction, the awareness that something of God is in every human face. Faith is the belief that the love of God was faced in Jesus Christ. Faith is the certainty that everyone who does the will of God is a child of God. Jesus said as much. In a world of increasing diversity, that needs to be faced. Faith is the thankful sense that by God the face of the whole earth is made new every morning, and we along with it if we but pray that it might be so. Faith is the mother of courage, of the ability to go on loving in the face of adversity, of the capacity to forgive, to be forgiven, to begin anew, of the confidence that even though so much is amiss in our world, God's love still holds sway and will have the final word. Thanks be to God."