Prayer of Forgiveness
O Lord, remember not only the men and women of good will, but also those of ill will. But do not remember all of the suffering they have inflicted upon us. Instead remember the fruits we have bought because of this suffering: our comradeship, our loyalty to one another, our humility, our courage, our generosity, the greatness of heart which have become part of our lives because of our suffering here. When our persecutors come to judgement, let all of these fruits that we have borne be their forgiveness. Amen. Amen. Amen.
a prayer found in the clothing of a dead child at Ravensbrück concentration camp
Capital Punishment? The work of the Believer is to be so open to the will of God that the names of all criminals who have disrupted society are on their lips as prayers for the salvation and restoration of their souls. Too idealistic? Too novel to be applied? Tell that to Thérèse of Lisieux, who prayed for the murderer Henri Pranzini, and saw his conversion to Christ just before the State of France executed him. We wrestle not against flesh and blood. Pray for your enemies, and do good to those who hurt you. You have heard it said to take an eye for an eye, but that is not the way of Jesus… and he likely knows what is best. It is the present State which administers capital punishment, but since we as Believers are the true rulers of Earth (though unknown just now, but not always) we have the responsibility to a higher way, the way that Thérèse Martin followed, the way of prayer for the criminal–a far better solution than sending the lost soul into eternity without hope, if they must, after all, die at the hands of the State. So, should we as Christians support capital punishment? If we do, then are we not supporting the Interim Testament (Old Testament) which was fulfilled by Love’s Incarnation and his “New” Covenant, which was really the original covenant between God and man?