The Forgiveness Debate from Private Discussion Area of Survivors and Friends

(Image Roman Emperor and Stoic Philosopher Marcus Aurelius (sp)  Forgiving the Barbarians from Wikipedia)


Preparations for Survivor /  Institutional Reparations/Reconciliation  Mediations 2018.


In long form  5-day intensive Mediations and Conferences with Institutions, grappling with “Forgiveness conceptual frameworks”, while the Institutions are still in denial obstructive and Continuing Legal battles, could be a pointless exercise in futility.

Understanding of the conceptual framework may assist in a “healing process” but has to be survivor driven. It also allows for demolition of avoidant “forgiveness before “reconciliation” arguments for long-term planning.

Clear boundaries and a non-negotiable bottom line have to be established to wall off the peacemaking and forgiveness requirements within theological mindsets when oppositional to Criminal justice and reparations requirements.

Without a clear boundary, mediations may collapse causing a  further flow effect when trying to achieve the goals required for achieving positive change (win the strategic ground ) in an internal institutional hearts and minds campaign.

One of  the “Survivors and Friends Foundations” possible plans in advocacy for internal change within institutions based on the Royal Commissions investigations and findings are   proposed meetings  with institutional leaders and survivor groups and individuals 

A long form reconciliation and reparation series of meetings 


Forensic  Psychological methods are used  to reduce resistance by exposure to the evidence of case studies and face to face testimony from Survivor advocates.

It would include hard-edged Forensic details of multiple crimes and include deidentified testimony from Professionals in Criminology, Forensic Pathology, Coronial Reports and exposure to multiple survivor and advocate accounts over 16 – 24 hours in total followed by negotiations towards Change management. over another 16 – 24 hour period.

A  5-day commitment in a Secluded environment with Professional support and ongoing communications and debriefing.

The secondary wounding experiences when the institutions ignored rejected disbelieved intimidated and failed to provide support compassion care redress and restoration will be the theme also of these proposed Seminars.

Combining survivors and institutional members where all have equal power helps to require institutional insiders to  “face the past”.

This also means with Churches the sometimes toxic forgiveness concepts will need to be revealed analysed and discussed from a secular perspective.

With offenders, trying to force a “Restorative Justice” framework into victim-offender justice processes is from a main stream criminological perspective absolutely fraught with danger.

It is also re abusive to force a possibly outmoded criminological and forensic model onto victims where “Restorative Justice” initiatives are used for the benefit of offenders.

It seems sometimes that well-meaning people’s “intellectual ecosystems” can make survivors  lived experience into a “theoretical academic, heartbreakingly theological exercise”.

A trauma-informed victim centred response is now possible due to the investigations of the Royal Commission into Justice responses.

Without the active intervention of the Royal Commission, some “Restorative justice ” principals have been co-opted by institutional power brokers to hide perpetrators and manipulate survivors.

Victim/survivors heartbreakingly have experienced terrible interactions with sometimes “pro-offender” institutional protectionist Restorative Justice acolytes as shown in the evidence of the RC across numerous case studies.

Kate Gleeson

Gleeson, Kate — “The Money Problem: Reparation and Restorative Justice in the Catholic Church’s Towards Healing Program” [2015] CICrimJust 4; (2015) 26(3) Current Issues in Criminal Justice 317
“Discussing reparations, Walker distinguishes between orthodox ‘corrective justice’ (in which compensation to make good a victim’s loss is central, conceptualised in terms of a ‘metric of loss’) and restorative justice, which also emphasises material and practical amends that address victims’ losses and needs (2006:384). But, ideally, reparations in a restorative framework should also play instrumental and symbolic roles in repairing relationships, including by ‘adding weight’ to gestures such as apology (Walker 2006:385). Approaches to justice for historical clerical child sexual abuse may have the most to learn from restorative treatments of historical injustice, such as mass political violence. Increasingly, discussions of reparations reject corrective justice focused on metrics of loss as the appropriate primary category for reparations involving groups or large numbers of individual victims of injustice. Instead, it is argued that reparations should emerge in a restorative context from a practice of communication centred on the needs and understanding of the victims as well as ‘wrongdoers’ deepened understanding of the nature and meaning of the victims’ loss and of the nature and extent of their own responsibility’ (Walker 2006:385). Walker cautions that reparations must be politically feasible, but ‘neither can they appear as cheap buyouts or fail to address victims directly and to validate their experience of suffering and specific experience of injustice, lest they add further insult to moral and material injury’ (2006:380).


Walker Walker MU (2006) ‘Restorative Justice and Reparations’, Journal of Social Philosophy 37(3), 377–95.

Any continued attempts at RJ in the context of historical clerical child sexual abuse should aim to abide by established standards and consider the role of reparations foremost in the context of RJ aims and ideals, which operate according to an ethos fundamentally different to corrective justice. However, so long as capacities for civil justice remain stymied in Australia, the ‘voluntariness’ of any compensatory or restorative program will be corrupted and undermined.”


Walker Walker MU (2006) ‘Restorative Justice and Reparations’, Journal of Social Philosophy 37(3), 377–95.


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