Healing Agony: Re-imagining Forgiveness

Author: Stephen Cherry?
ISBN: 978 1 4411 1938 4?
Date: 2012
Price: ?14.99
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Publisher: Continuum 2012

The Rt Revd the Lord Eames writes on the back cover of this book, ?Healing Agony is a searching analysis of forgiveness, challenging simplistic assumptions and asking questions to which there are no easy answers.? Stephen Cherry certainly teases out na?ve or unsophisticated thinking about forgiveness.

Working from the presumption that forgiveness is at the heart of Christian spirituality and of the sacraments, Stephen Cherry then challenges much of what passes for forgiveness. Forgiveness is a process that can only be entered into if we are free not to forgive; it is distinguished from compassion, which has a different dynamic, from pardoning which involves remission of a penalty and is less personal than forgiveness, from not condemning and from any therapy of reconciliation. Instead, forgiveness is a generous and creative venture of trust, a dynamic that moves forward rather than puts the clocks back. We should develop a forgiving heart and virtues rather than imagining we have a God-like power to forgive.?

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