In an age of ever increasing litigation we have become highly tuned to the need for justice. But is there room for mercy? In this book Fr Ken Barker argues passionately that without mercy justice will not be complete. He makes a compelling case for mercy through the use of stories about remarkable human beings who, faced with hurt and violence, have chosen to forgive rather than to seek vengeance. He reminds us that mercy is the highest quality in the heart of God, and hence the most liberating attitude for any human heart.

This book provides much needed teaching on forgiveness. With great clarity and sensitivity Fr Barker addresses the deep questions that arise in our hearts when we have been the victims of violence, or when we have been deeply hurt by a betrayal of trust. “Why forgive when a grave injustice has been done against me?” “How can I forgive when they don’t deserve it?” “Does forgiving someone mean I have to forget?” “When I forgive do I have to excuse the one who offended me?” “How can I forgive when I feel hatred in my heart?” “Why has God allowed this to happen to me?” The gospel principles enunciated here provide a sure pointer towards freedom for all who have agonised with these questions. The stories offered here of those who have found this freedom are a light in the darkness, and an inspiration towards the highest calling of any human being – to have mercy and to forgive.

“At a time when the spirit of vengeance is abroad in many ways, it is hard to think of a more important theme than mercy. Without it, human beings are destined, like Cain, to murder their brothers and sisters. But mercy takes us out of the fratricidal world into the world of love where the human being is free to become what God has always had in mind, free to be in the image of God and to share the divine ecstasy.”

Archbishop Mark Coleridge (Foreword)

Fr Ken Barker is the founder of the Missionaries of God’s Love, a new emerging congregation in the Australian Church. He is a well known Conference speaker, involved in charismatic renewal, Disciples of Jesus Community, Young Men of God Movement, and various other youth ministries. He is the author of the books Becoming Fire, Radical Way of Love, and the best-selling Young Men Rise Up.

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