Nelson Mandela had many commendable qualities, not least was the courage to maintain his principles despite 27 years in prison. But his most admirable quality was his ability to forgive. Instead of retribution, he chose forgiveness. And in doing so, South Africa changed from the brutality of apartheid to the freedom of democracy, without a civil war. How can we learn from Mandela’s example, that forgiveness is strength, not weakness? And that forgiveness heals the forgiver as well as the forgiven.
Sam Gugino has been a chef, restaurant critic, wine columnist, and author of four cookbooks. He recently retired as contributing editor and columnist for Wine Spectator magazine. He has been a member of the Unitarian Society of Germantown since 2002, where has served in a number of capacities including membership chair, stewardship chair, and two terms as president of the Board of Trustees. He lives in the Chestnut Hill section of Philadelphia with his wife, Mary Lee Keane.