From our Gospel reading today: ‘If you are offering your gift at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift’.

St Benedict says this: ‘The Offices of Lauds and Vespers should never be allowed to pass without the superior at the end of all reciting the Lord’s Prayer in the hearing of all the brethren, on account of the thorns of scandal which are wont to arise; so that warned by the covenant which they make in that prayer, saying: “Forgive us as we forgive,” they may cleanse themselves of such faults. At the other Offices let the last part of that prayer be said aloud, so that all may answer: “But deliver us from evil.”‘

Forgiveness of one another is at the heart of the Christian message; it is impossible to love without forgiving – sometimes for wounds that lie many years back.

May we take this message to heart, and may God bless all your growth in love.