I'd like to thank Jennifer Savage for her timely article on forgiveness ("Five Things to Know Before You Forgive Someone," Dec. 25). With a new year upon us, for most it is a time to reflect how we can make amends; a time to learn from our mistakes by becoming new and improved versions of our inadequate selves.
The article inspired me to revisit a clipping that I had cut and saved from a previous Journal entitled "John (Still) Says Forgive" (Dec. 14, 2012). Some of you may remember John Tutuska, whose forgiveness banner was boldly displayed over Ramone's storefront reminding us of this message. Mr. Tutuska chose a statement from A Course in Miracles, stating, "that means that when an old grievance is forgiven it becomes a sacred experience enlightening the time and space around it."
There are moments in individuals' lives when there are casualties from people's actions. Actions that are not necessarily done in malice but because change is necessary. As a product of divorce I remember the anger and hatred I had for my father (a loving and kind man) for leaving my mother. Years later I was able to see this was a healthy choice for my dad. He spoke of the great painful burden he carried all those years from hurting me in that process. I am thankful I had the opportunity to let my dad know I forgave him.
Jennifer is right, bitterness is unhealthy. Obviously there are different degrees of actions requiring different levels of forgiveness. Some of these take time to resolve. (Some so despicable, forgiveness is not an option.) Yet, if possible why not begin your new year on a sweet note by having that "sacred moment enlightening the time and space around it." Because John (still) says forgive.
Mairead Dodd, Eureka