One of Jesus’ final words from the cross reminds us of the absolute necessity of forgiveness for those who claim to follow Him:
“Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Earlier in the Gospels when He teaches His apostles to pray, He clearly states, “Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.” Forgiveness is not an option if we claim to be His followers.
- A core tenant of our Catholic faith is that God has forgiven us and desires to bring us back into right relationship with Him.
- I need to believe in His forgiveness and truly believe I am forgiven.
- God gives us all we need to forgive others.
- God does not ask us to “forgive and forget”, but rather to “remember and forgive.”
- In forgiving another, we release hate and embrace peace and freedom.
- Steps of Forgiveness
- Make a decision that you want to fully forgive.
- Ask God to remove your feelings of bitterness, resentment, and hostility.
- Acknowledge it is God’s role, not yours, to judge this person for their actions.
- Ask God to help you release this person from your judgment.
- Ask God to bless the person you are forgiving.