Casting stones

I wrote this post a while ago now, on my iphone using an application that clearly failed to post.  Anyway, while it is less current, I thought I’d post it now anyway….

These rambling thoughts are probably going to ruffle a few feathers, including my own. But I feel stirred to write, a rare occurrence these days. I have just read a story from the ABC website about David Ferguson, convicted pedophile who has served his time and is in the process of trying to establish a life of sorts on the other side of the bars. Except that he really has nowhere to live. Understandably, his current neighbours don’t want him living next door. Would I? Probably not, if I am really honest. But the man has served his sentence. One hopes useful interventions were put in place while he was a captive audience as it were. Perhaps he is rehabilitated. Or maybe he has learned to harness himself. I am saddened,because I feel as though he will never have opportunity to be anything other than an abuser. I am not suggesting placing children at risk, but surely he should be given an opportunity to live in a manner that takes even the tiniest step towards reintegration in society.  Where does grace fit in here? The man has most certainly been placed outside society by his conduct. The damage done to his victims is not repayable.  His conduct is barely forgivable.  But the question remains – where is grace for him, and what does it look like, if he is our neighbour, both literally and figuratively.