Forgiving Usually Takes Time: A Lesson Learned by Studying Interventions to Promote Forgiveness

Volume
Volume 28
Issue
Spring 2000
Title
Forgiving Usually Takes Time: A Lesson Learned by Studying Interventions to Promote Forgiveness
Abstract

Numerous accounts of research on promoting forgiveness in group settings have been published, indicating that forgiveness can be promoted successfully in varying degrees. Many have suggested that empathy-based interventions are often successful. It takes time to develop empathy for an offender. We report three studies of very brief attempts to promote forgiveness in psychoeducational group settings. The studies use ten-minute, one-hour, two-hour, and 130-minute interventions with college students. The studies test whether various components-€”namely, pre-intervention videotapes and a letter-writing exercise-€”of a more complex model (the Pyramid Model to REACH Forgiveness) can produce forgiveness. Each study is reported on its own merits, but the main lesson is that the amount of forgiveness is related to time that participants spend empathizing with the transgressor. A brief intervention of two hours or less will probably not reliably promote much forgiveness; however, one might argue that it starts people on the road to forgiving.

Authors
Dr. E.L., Jr. Worthington, Dr. T.A. Kurusu, Dr. W. Collins, Dr. J.W. Berry, Dr. J.S. Ripley and S.N. Baier
Pages
3 - 20
Price
Add to Cart $0.00