By: Father John Catoir

Love and forgiveness are intimately related. We hurt one another so often, it takes great love to mend the fences and heal the wounds.

Forgiveness is a gentle form of love. Forgiveness is also a precondition of prayer. Here’s a story which speaks eloquently of the beauty of a forgiving heart.

Clara Barton, founder of the American nursing profession, never held a grudge. Once a friend reminded her of something cruel that had been to her but she seemed not to remember it.

“Don’t you remember the wrong that was done to you?” the friend asked. “No”, Clara answered, “I distinctly remember forgetting that.”

If, then, you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember your brother has something against you, leave your gift before the altar: go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come back and offer your gift.- Mt. 5:23-24

And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against any one; so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. – Mk. 11:25


By: F.M.Britto

 Graham Stewart Staines, an Australian missionary, was involved in rehabilitating lepers in a tribal district in Orissa. When sleeping in his jeep in a village with his seven and nine-year-old sons, Timothy and Philip, some religious fanatics poured gasoline on the jeep and burned the trio to death.

 While the nation mourned the brutal killing, people of all faiths condemned this barbaric act. His griefstricken wife, Gladys, could have avenged the killers, but she forgave them, saying, “They (the murderers) are also children of God. They too deserve forgiveness.”

 Since then, Gladys Staines has come to be regarded as an icon of forgiveness.

We have two options before us: to stay where we are, or to give/seek forgiveness. “He who cannot forgive others destroys the bridge over which he himself must pass,” says George Herbert.

We all stand in need of forgiveness from God, from others and from ourselves, too. Without forgiveness, there can only be resentment or guilt. When we nurture the hurt, we imprison ourselves. In the long run, bitterness harms your psyche and destroys your relationships.

Forgiveness heals not just one person, but two, or even more. Forgiveness frees the forgiver and the forgiven. It heals the spirit and mends relationships. It takes the sting off our hurt memory. When the weight of resentment and guilt are lifted, power is released. A personal experience in this regard would prompt one to say: “To forgive is to set a prisoner free. What joy it is to discover that the prisoner is me!”

Forgiveness is essentially a human need. It ought to become a way of life. Forgiveness is born of love and concern for the well being of others and ourselves. Curiously, forgiveness is a funny thing – it warms the heart and cools the sting! We therefore need to forgive the little, everyday annoyances of others, and pardon ourselves of our own wrongs big and small.

Forgiveness, as a matter of fact, is not an instinctive response. It takes time and courage to forgive, especially when the injury is deliberate. Instinctively we want to retaliate, when we are hurt. That’s why Mahatma Gandhi says” “Forgiveness is the virtue of the brave.”

Remember, some injuries are unintended or unavoidable. Note, also, your own shortcomings. Do not say some hurts are too big to be forgiven. If you say that you have forgiven but cannot forget, it is only another way of saying that you cannot forgive. Forgiveness is hollow if it is not total.

Forgiveness, besides being difficult is also risky. It makes one vulnerable. And yet, forgiveness is not merely accepting an apology, but accepting the other in toto, as s/he is.


The dying Samaru called for his brother with whom he had been at odds for years. The old man told his brother that he was afraid to die with so much of ill feeling in his heart. They both forgave each other. As his brother turned to leave, feeling hugely relieved, Samaru called to him and said, “But beware! In case I recover, this does not hold!”

Here forgiveness is not sincere but conditional. “I will forgive you, if…” No ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’, please! Forgiveness is not a feeling but a decision and a decision is the first step to forgiveness – and an essential one at that.

Look closely at the injury. Acknowledge your feeling of resentment or guilt. Without forgiveness this feeling will only deepen, hardening your heart. Would you really want to live with that? The deeper the wound, the longer does it take to, even if there is a desire, to forgive.

Take prompt action: speak a word, pen a letter, perform a kind act, make a telephone call, or whisper a prayer.

Since it is humanly not easy to forgive others and ourselves, ask God to strengthen you. You can at least deeply desire to forgive, even when the hurt lingers. You may pray for the person who has hurt or offended you, even if that person does not want your forgiveness.

“We can achieve inner health only through forgiveness – the forgiveness not only of others but also of ourselves,” points out Joshua Liebman.



Romans 10:9-13

 If you confess that Jesus is Lord and believe that God raised him from death, you will be saved. For it is by our faith that we are put right with God; it is by our confession that we are saved. The scripture says, “Whoever believes in him will not be disappointed.” This includes everyone, because there is no difference between Jews and Gentiles; God is the same Lord of all and richly blesses all who call to him. As the scripture says, “Everyone who calls out to the Lord for help will be saved.”


Acts 13:38-39

All of you, my fellow Israelites, are to know for sure that it is through Jesus that the message about forgiveness of sins is preached to you; you are to know that everyone who believes in him is set free from all the sins from which the Law of Moses could not set you free.

FORGIVENESS (6 of 12 Basic Virtues)

To forgive the other does not necessarily mean that you like him or want to associate with him. Nobody can be compelled to like someone, neither can a government legislate good will, love, peace, or tolerance. We can, however, love people without liking them.       Love means wishing for the other health, happiness, peace, joy, and all the blessings of life. There is only one prerequisite, and that is sincerity. You are not being magnanimous when you forgive, you are really being selfish, because what you wish for the other, you are actually wishing for yourself.

Forgiveness of others is essential mental peace and radiant health. You must forgive everyone who has ever hurt you if you want perfect health and happiness. Forgive yourself by getting your thoughts in harmony with divine law and order. You cannot really forgive yourself completely until you have forgiven others first. –Dr Joseph

Forgiveness is the fragrance the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it. –Mark Twain



Have you ever asked yourself, ‘Why is there no joy in my life, what are the impediments to my happiness?’ It is the curtain of the mundane that keeps us from realizing how special life really is. This curtain of the mundane makes us take life for granted, often hurting the very people we love. Our tread on happiness begins only when we heartily forgive others and ourselves for the distress we may have caused to them or they may have caused us. In the few years that you walk with life and illumine this body, let magnanimity walk with you. Let forgiveness be your companion. Realize that only giving can enrich you, and giving up can set you free. Forego the unnecessary burden of grudges. Close your eyes, your windows to the world, and visualize five persons who have caused you hurt. Say the loving words, ‘I forgive you heartily as God forgives me, for my highest good and the highest good of the whole Universe. So be it.’ Now recall five individuals you have caused hurt to. Repeat this little prayer, asking forgiveness from your hearts. Seeking forgiveness and forgiving in this manner is as potent as asking it directly, even more so, for this way you are contacting individuals at their soul level, bypassing their personality which could offer resistance.

“There are no boundaries except the ones we create!”

by rachna singh



“Let me hear of your steadfast love in the morning, for in you I put my trust.” –Psalm 143:8

1.     Forgiveness is a decision and not a feeling.

2.     Accept the other person as he is.

3.     Forgiveness is a way of life. Nothing clutters the soul more than remorse, resentment and recrimination.

4.     Forgive yourself to forgive others, there is much to admire in everyone of us.

5.     Try to understand why the one who has hurt you acted as he did.

6.     Forgiveness is not a deal, it is a decision to love.

7.     Forgiveness stimulates your spiritual growth.

8.     Forgiveness is not an admission that we are wrong.

9.     Accept whatever part of the responsibility for the offense may be rightfully yours.

10. Remember your own failings and weaknesses – we all need forgiveness and we have experienced it from someone else.

Forgiveness of Sin

I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,” and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. – Psalm 32:5

For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us. – Psalm 103:11-12

If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? But with you there is forgiveness, that you may be feared. – Psalm 130:3-4

I, I am he “who blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and I will not remember your sins.” – Isaiah 43:25

He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. – Colossians 1:13-14

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. – 1 John 1:9

And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses. – Colossians 2:13

Where there is forgiveness of (sins), there is no longer any offering for sin. – Hebrews 10:18

Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! – Psalm 51:1-2



“For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” – Matthew 6:14-15

“And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.” – Mark 11:25

“Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you.” – Luke 6:37-38

“…and forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone who is indebted to us.” – Luke 11:4

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. – Ephesians 4:32


So let us come near to God with a sincere heart and a sure faith, with hearts that have been purified from a guilty conscience and with bodies washed with clean water. – Hebrews 10:22

Guilt is a heavy load to carry, not only emotionally, but also physically. It may be well-earned or just a lifelong accumulation of “should haves”. Whatever the source, it’s an invisible stressor that won’t lose its grip on you until you give up your hold on it. Not only that, it hinders your faith and keeps you from drawing close to God.

Begin by determining where your guilt comes from. Is what you’re hearing the truth? Is there something you should do, confess, make up for? If so , take care of it. If your guilt is based on unfounded words of condemnation placed on you by someone in your past, then relief will come only when you recognize and discard them. God has already promised His forgiveness. What’s holding you back from forgiving yourself? Finding the answer to that will free you to grow an even stronger faith.



By: David Viscott

It’s time. What is the point of keeping your hurt alive?

To justify your anger and make you feel better about plotting your revenge? Not a good place to live, in a mind that is filled with hate, and you are frozen in hatred when you don’t forgive.

You don’t want to forgive? You probably have good reasons, a long list of good reasons. Without arguing with the fact that you were hurt, why is it that you are the one who is still suffering?

Forgiving is the next step and the last step.

Forgiving is letting go of your hurt.

If you are holding onto your pain because you want to show the person who hurt you how much damage he or she caused you, or if you act in a self-defeating way, always courting failure, allowing success to slip through your life, displaying your hurt by playing the role of a damaged person, perhaps you are making a big mistake.

If the person who hurt you could be influenced by your suffering to fell guild and remorse and make amends to you, he or she would most likely be the kind of person who never would have hurt you in the first place.

Life always gets complicated when you conceal your hurt and wait for people to come to you and apologize. Your withheld hurt turns into anger and makes you victimize yourself.

If you expect others to make repairs, you’re always disappointed.

You need to forgive as much as you deserve to be forgiven.

You need to forgive if ever you are to love again.