good friday – the seven words (reflections)

The First Word – “Father forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”

In the title of his book on the subject, Archbishop Desmond puts it this way: there is no future without forgiveness. Without forgiveness, the human descends into patterns of remembered hatreds and ongoing hostility. Without forgiveness, the human descends into repetitive cycles of violence and counter-violence. There is no future without forgiveness.

Forgiveness isn’t simply about letting go of wrongs done to me. Forgiveness isn’t about making me feel better and allowing me to get on with my life. Forgiveness is a step on the way to restored relationships. Forgiveness is about a restoration of trust in relationships where trust was broken. Forgiveness is about restoring respect in relationships where disrespect was shown. Forgiveness is a step on the way to healed relationships – on the way to an embrace between those who were alienated.  The path of forgiveness and reconciliation is often a long and difficult one. But there is no future without forgiveness. Continue reading