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Struggling to Forgive


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How can someone who has experienced trauma be expected to forgive?

About the Author

SUE ATKINSON is the author of CLIMBING OUT OF DEPRESSION, a highly successful book which has proved invaluable to many sufferers because it is written from the point of view of a sufferer rather than an 'expert'. She is a specialist in mathematics education and has co-authored a definitive maths teaching scheme. The wife of a CoE archdeacon, she has four grown up children and lives in Norwich.


Struggling to Forgive is a book which, as its title so aptly points out, is honest that forgiveness can be a struggle, and at times a very hard struggle. Well-informed by pastoral realism and theological integrity, Sue Atkinson leads us through many difficult questions to do with forgiveness with plenty of real-life examples. I warmly commend this perceptive book as thought-provoking, easy to read and eminently practical. -- Dr Anthony Bash
Some of the appalling so called `Christian' understandings of forgiveness which can be SO hurting to a survivor are examined and dissected and the theological basis of them destroyed lovingly by Sue. My hope is that this book is not only read by survivors of child abuse but also by caring Christians who are interested in genuinely helping people to heal from the hurts of their childhood. -- Liz Mullinar, founder of The Heal For Life Foundation, Australia
Accessible and honest, this is a book based on hard-won self-awareness and genuine compassion for others. It can therefore be placed with gentle confidence in the hands of victims of abuse. -- Canon Dr Stephen Cherry
A very good and illuminating read. A wonderful achievement. Sue Atkinson writes about the complexity of forgiveness with striking honesty and profound simplicity. Those struggling to forgive will be helped to understand themselves. Anyone inclined to instruct others to forgive will be chastened. People able to forgive will be given fresh insight into what they have done. Sue addresses our minds and spirits with great sensitivity. She has written a forgiving book. -- Rt Revd Graham James, Lord Bishop of Norwich
Sue Atkinson spells out with costly honesty the hard work of forgiveness. No illusions or shortcuts, but a powerful sense of how this most radical of promises and imperatives actually fleshes itself out in human lives. We are shown how what seems impossible becomes real - but not with some sort of `magical' swiftness and ease, so that the centrality of the crucified love of Christ never moves out of focus. A book of real value and depth. -- Dr Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury
Refreshingly honest, psychologically realistic, biblically responsible, and pastorally sensitive ... Many will find it a godsend. -- Nigel Biggar, Regius Professor of Moral and Pastoral Theology, Oxford University
"The author writes from her experience, which is painful yet adds strength to the message of her book ... full of the Biblical themes of healing, love and compassion ... practical, clearly set out and easy to read, but never trite or simplistic ... many will be encouraged in the process to healing by reading this book" * The Reader *

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