Pardon Day

Although it is a unique situation, being involved in a presidential pardon, there are still interesting ways to observe this day on September 8th. It is a day where forgiveness is at the forefront, and a reconciliation period will follow. As with any day that is a little unknown, it can be hard to find information about it, so let us enlighten you.

What Is Pardon Day?

In truth, Pardon Day is difficult to look back on and find the very first event or how it came about, but history can tell us a few things about it.

To trace the origin of the day, we must first go back to 1974, to September 8th. President Ford was in power and had a controversial proclamation to pass. It was to pardon Richard M. Nixon for any wrongdoing regarding the Watergate Affair. This is one of the most infamous cases and scandals and is well known throughout America not only because of the infamous events but also because of the pardon from Ford.

Although this is a place to find oneself, the feel of the day goes way beyond anything presidential. It is about forgiveness, but also about letting go of any pain one might feel towards someone else. Life is a journey, and we all find ourselves wronged from time to time. Letting go of any resentment and ill feelings doesn’t come naturally to us all, but if you can pardon someone who has done you wrong, life will be a lot sweeter.

Giving forgiveness is a selfless trait, and it doesn’t absolve the person of the guilt they may feel about the situation. However, there is no sense in holding onto resentment, so giving a pardon can feel like a release.

How To Observe Pardon Day?

It all starts with letting go. An act of pardoning someone you know can go a long way toward healing, even if you have no intention of rekindling a relationship afterward.

In other areas, teaching children about forgiveness and pardoning others who may upset them in some way can help build positive character traits. Retelling stories of forgiveness, such as when Pope John Paul II forgave his would-be assassin back in 1981, even going as far as visiting him in prison, are always going to help add some context.

However, no one should feel pressured into meeting the person they feel like they want to forgive. Nor does anyone have to forgive someone immediately. It can take a long time to move into a space where you are ready to pardon someone for something they have done. It should be said that holding onto ill feelings will often make a person feel worse over time. To get some closure, forgiveness is part of letting go.

Sometimes it is about forgiving yourself for something you have done. This is a kind act in itself as we are all fallible and human. No one is perfect, hence why we need Pardon Day to remind us sometimes.

When is it?
This year (2024)
September 8 Sunday
Next year (2025)
September 8 Monday
Last year (2023)
September 8 Friday
Relationships & Family