• LES HENSON

The Way of Reconciliation

Les Henson


We live in a world where there are many divisions, polarisations, and unimaginable violence. In such a context, the fact that we, as the people of God, have good news of the possibility of reconciliation is vitally important. The act of proclaiming the good news of reconciliation to those who are divided, to those standing at polar opposites, and to both the victim and the oppressor is a prophetic act that can lead to forgiveness and grace to those on both sides of the divide. To proclaim reconciliation in a divided world is a remarkable act of witness to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Of course, the mediation of reconciliation requires a deep commitment to dialogue to bring about reconciliation between, parties, the forgiven and the one who forgives. It necessitates openness, patience, and presence on the part of both sides of the divide or polarisation. Reconciliation can only be brought about when both sides understand and recognise the humanity of the other despite the history between them. As the people of God, we are called to offer both understanding love and the challenge to forgive and be forgiven so that everyone involved in that conflict can move towards new life. Yet, to offer reconciliation is costly, and it is always in danger of being misunderstood. It also almost always involves pain and sorrow for the reconciler; however, that is the way of the cross and the call of Jesus.

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