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On Death Row, He Got a Letter That 'Brought Me to My Knees'

'Atlantic' story relays tale of forgiveness offered to a murderer from his victim's granddaughter

(Newser) - One effective way to wrangle with tough emotions is to keep a journal, but for Sarah Gregory, she channeled her rage into a letter—one sent to her grandmother's killer, now on death row in Alabama. As told to Elizabeth Bruenig in her piece for the Atlantic , Gregory recalls...

Game Developer Was Attacked Mercilessly, Turns Merciful

Brianna Wu, a prime target of GamerGate, speaks out about forgiveness

(Newser) - As a female game developer who spoke out publicly against sexism in the industry a few years back, Brianna Wu received torrents—and we mean torrents—of threats and abuse online. Now the Washington Post reports that Wu is forcing a different kind of conversation, one about forgiving the trolls...

Victim's Brother: This Is Why I Hugged the Shooter

Brandt Jean talks about his now-famous embrace with Amber Guyger

(Newser) - Feelings are "mixed" about the "remarkable" hug that the younger brother of Botham Jean gave to Amber Guyger at her sentencing hearing, per the Jean family attorney, but one person who's sure that what he did was right is Brandt Jean, ABC News reports. The 18-year-old made...

He's Fighting to Save His Family's Killer. The Killer: His Own Son

Bart Whitaker set to be executed Feb. 22 for killing his mom and brother, but dad isn't giving up on him

(Newser) - "My wife and son were murdered by a masked gunman, and my other son and I were left for dead, but survived." Those are the words of Kent Whitaker on his website , detailing the horrific crime that tore his life apart in December 2003. But, he adds, things...

Mark Wahlberg Sorry He Played Well-Endowed Porn Star

Catholic actor has prayed to God for forgiveness for his role in 1997's 'Boogie Nights'

(Newser) - Mark Wahlberg says he hopes God will forgive him for his turn as a porn star in PT Anderson's 1997 film Boogie Nights. Wahlberg told the Chicago Tribune ahead of an event with Chicago Cardinal Blase Cupich on Friday that he hopes "God is a movie fan and...

Zuckerberg's Yom Kippur Message: Forgive Me, and Facebook

Not everyone is buying his sincerity, though

(Newser) - Like other Jews during Yom Kippur, Mark Zuckerberg tried to atone for his sins and made a plea for forgiveness over the weekend, Reuters reports. Unlike most other Jews, he asked forgiveness from millions of people—not just for his personal mistakes, but also for his social media platform. "...

The One Call Between Shooter and Victim That Changed It All

Debbie Baigrie forgave Ian Manuel, who served 26 years in prison after shooting her when he was 13

(Newser) - A July night in 1990 changed both of their lives for the worse, but one phone call and the power of forgiveness then changed both their lives for the better. People details the story of Ian Manuel, who was just 13 when he was egged on to rob someone in...

Paralyzed NYPD Cop Who Urged Forgiveness Dies at 59

Steven McDonald, shot by teen in Central Park in '86, traveled world to spread message

(Newser) - Steven McDonald spent the last 30 years of his life in a wheelchair, but the NYPD officer shot by a teen in Central Park chose forgiveness, becoming "an international emblem," per CNN . McDonald died Tuesday at a Long Island hospital at age 59, just days after suffering a...

Parents Forgive Sons Who Allegedly Tried to Kill Them

'We love them unconditionally'

(Newser) - A Georgia couple say they've forgiven two sons accused of attacking them in an alleged murder plot. Yvonne and Zachery Ervin spoke publicly yesterday for the first time outside Gwinnett County Court. "Those were not our boys that did that to us," said Yvonne Ervin, who still...

Pope: Priests Can Forgive Women Who've Had Abortions

Francis grants absolution power during Holy Year for 'painful decision'

(Newser) - Abortion is one of the sins that mandates automatic excommunication in the Roman Catholic Church, but for the Holy Year of Mercy that begins Dec. 8, Pope Francis says priests can, at their discretion, absolve women for terminating pregnancies, Reuters reports. "Many … believe that they have no other...

After Dream, Murder Victim's Son at Peace

Brian Larson had 'vision' that slain dad had forgiven his own killer

(Newser) - On March 20, 1990, Bruce Larson was murdered near Salt Lake City after a contracting deal gone bad, leaving behind a wife and five kids, including 9-year-old Brian. But despite missing out on all the father-son bonding experiences over the years, Brian is finally able to forgive his dad's...

Down With Forgiveness
 Down With Forgiveness 

Down With Forgiveness

Sometimes it's healthier to hold a grudge: Simon Doonan

(Newser) - You hear a lot about the healing power of forgiveness these days, but the movement has gone too far, writes Simon Doonan in Slate . Reeva Steenkamp's uncle wants to forgive Oscar Pistorius for killing her. The mother of the girl who was raped in Steubenville, Ohio, forgave one of...

Forgiveness Can Kill a Marriage
 Forgiveness Can Kill a Marriage 
study says

Forgiveness Can Kill a Marriage

Expressing anger can be a good thing, says professor

(Newser) - All that forgive and forget stuff? Bad for marriage, apparently, which thrives on a good argument once in a while. The "short-term discomfort of an angry but honest conversation" helps a marriage in the long run, says University of Tennessee Associate Professor James McNulty, who conducted several studies on...

Church to Honor Prayer Request for Osama

'He needs forgiveness,' says Catholic parishioner in Florida

(Newser) - A Catholic man in Florida is testing his fellow parishioners capacity for forgiveness this weekend: Henry Borga paid $10 to have the name Osama bin Laden entered in the church bulletin for Sunday prayers at the Holy Name of Jesus church, reports WPTV in West Palm Beach. "He needs...

Americans Want Forgiving World, But Won't Forgive

There's 'a near-universal desire for a more loving and unified world'

(Newser) - Americans have a complicated relationship with forgiveness—they wish the world was a more forgiving place, but are rather stingy with forgiving people themselves. A full 94% agreed they'd like to see more forgiveness in the country, according to a survey by the Fetzer Institute. Despite that hope, a full...

Ringo Underwhelmed by Vatican's Forgiveness

'The Vatican, they've got more to talk about than the Beatles'

(Newser) - The Vatican may have forgiven the Beatles for their lifestyles, supposedly satanic messages, and bigger-than-Jesus claims, but it's apparently not a moment Ringo Starr was holding his breath for. "Didn't the Vatican say we were satanic or possibly satanic—and they've still forgiven us?" the drummer told CNN during...

Americans Would Forgive Tiger Before John Edwards...

...or Chris Brown, Polanski, Madoff: poll

(Newser) - Americans appear to be in the mood to forgive a variety of national figures laid low by this or that scandal, and Tiger Woods in particular. Some 32% of respondents to a CBS News poll said they would pardon the transgressions of the likes of Woods, Charlie Sheen, and John...

Pope Meets, Forgives Female Assailant

Benedict offers 'best wishes' for Susanna Maiolo's health

(Newser) - The pope met today with Susanna Maiolo, the mentally distressed woman who tackled him to the ground on Christmas Eve. The Vatican says Maiolo “apologized for what happened” during a “brief private meeting” in which Benedict showed “her his forgiveness.” He also “expressed his interest...

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