Penthos in the modern world
What does penthos look like today ?
We don't live like hermits, and we may not believe in God. So does penthos have any meaning for us now ?
In non-religious language, penthos is remorse, regret for wrong-doing, the vulnerability of asking for forgiveness together with the comfort of the assurance of that forgiveness; the 'making right' of saying sorry. It is about the restoration enabled by frank confession of doing wrong. You don't have to be religious to 'get' that or indeed to practice it.
So we might find elements of it in the justice system where victims and perpetrators of crimes are brought together, and the criminal hears words of forgiveness.
Or despite the motives we may possibly see elements of it in the rebuilding of Germany by the Allies after the Second World War (in contrast to the Treaty of Versailles).
We may also see it in the mentality that rages or weeps at injustice and oppression and yearns to put it right. Consider this, for example.
We hope that reflecting on the words and music of the Penthos Requiem will bring it alive for you too.
St Peter’s Singers is using the Penthos project to raise funds for four charities in Leeds that work on the ground supporting refugees and asylum seekers. There will be a collection at the concert, and or you can make a donation here.