When to Forgive

Avery Cardinal Dulles

in Church and Society

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print April 2008 | ISBN: 9780823228621
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823236619 | DOI:
When to Forgive

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This chapter discusses the act of forgiveness, asking who should forgive, who should be forgiven and under what circumstances. In most cases, the party who forgives is the one who has suffered injury or to whom a debt is due. The recipient of forgiveness is the person who has committed an offense or incurred a debt. The usual conditions of forgiveness are three: that the person receiving it be sorry for any wrong committed, be resolved to desist from continuing or repeating the evil action, and be prepared to make satisfaction, as far as possible. To be disposed for forgiveness one need not expect to avoid future misdeeds, but one must be resolved to take effective measures to prevent such acts. The discussion also tackles the social and political aspects of forgiveness, as well as its burdens and benefits.

Keywords: forgiveness; injury; offense; victim; sin; resentment

Chapter.  5553 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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