Stacy, some practical thoughts. If you reflect on this question with any degree of honesty, you already know that there are some things we simply do not ever "forgive", notwithstanding the doctrines of the Church and the principles of repentence.
It seems to me that societies and cultures deem certain acts or types of behavior to be so threatening or offensive that those offenders can never really effectively "pay their debt to society". In other times and places there were different categories of specific offenses that were unforgivable. Today we have our own set. The people we now categorize as "sex offenders" receive the most severe and lasting stigma. I think it would be a mistake for you to engage with such an individual, not necessarily because of any of his wrongdoing or propensities for evil, but rather, because he will likely ever be burdened with the social stigma, and if you associate with him, you will have to willingly share that burden. This is from the personal perspective of one who carries such a stigma. Since I became legally divorced I have been classified a "deadbeat dad", a despicable criminal in the eyes of the state, and I have learned that while many people claim to be compassionate and forgiving, much of the time they don't really mean it in any substantive sense. As soon as they learn about my criminal status, they are automatically filled with righteous hatred. There is an implicit understanding that bad people deserve nothing but contempt. In fact someone said as much to me at one time, right here on this list. I can testify, it would take a very special relationship to get me to believe that people will ever trust me again. I suggest that the very fact that you express doubt about the efficacy of atonement and repentance are indications that this isn't a relationship for you to pursue. Thoughts along the same line--there is an interesting public debate currently heating up on this criminal history issue. Some civil rights advocates now complain that public access to criminal history data violates the constitutional prohibition of "cruel and unusual punishment", since it effectively becomes a life sentence for individuals whose names are listed. This becomes complicated and confused with other cultural values, since many are so vehemently opposed to the death penalty. It is a complicated world we live in. --- Mij Ebaboc ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// /// ZION LIST CHARTER: Please read it at /// /// http://www.zionsbest.com/charter.html /// ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// ==^================================================================ This email was sent to: email@example.com EASY UNSUBSCRIBE click here: http://topica.com/u/?aaP9AU.bWix1n.YXJjaGl2 Or send an email to: [EMAIL PROTECTED] T O P I C A -- Register now to manage your mail! http://www.topica.com/partner/tag02/register ==^================================================================