Thursday, March 26, 2009

Thomas Merton on Forgiveness

If the unity of Christians in One Body makes the Church a sign of God in the world, and if men tend unfortunately to conflict and division by reason of their weakness, selfishness and sin, then the will to reconciliation and pardon is necessary if the Church is to make God visible in the world. Nor can this pardon, this communion in forgiveness, remain interior and invisible. It must be clearly manifest. So the mystery of the Church demands that Christians love one another in a visible and concrete way...Christ will not be visible to the world in His Church except in proportion as Christians seek peace and unity with one another and with all men. But since conflict is inevitable, unity cannot be maintained except in great difficulty, with constantly renewed sacrifice, with lucid honety, openness, humility, the readiness to ask forgiveness and to forgive.

Thomas Merton, Seasons of Celebration

1 comment:

full of hope said...

This morning I came upon this verse, "You show that you are a letter from Christ" (2 Corinthians 3:3. Today's blog seems to go hand-in-hand with this thought. If the church is to make God visible in this world, then as believers we really must understand that our lives will be read by others. Does what the world "reads" from us compel them to look to Christ? Our lives are to reflect the message of light, love, and hope--not fear, hate and judgment! The very idea that I am a letter from Christ, humbly keeps me on my knees with my eyes gazing upon Him. What a responsibility, what a privilege, what a joy!