Institute for Forgiveness and Reconciliation to Host Evening Featuring Michael Berg and Canadian Songwriter Peter Katz

Release Date: Tuesday, April 17, 2012

PHILADELPHIA, PA –The Institute for Forgiveness and Reconciliation at Chestnut Hill College will host “Faces of Forgiveness” on Tuesday, April 17, at 7 p.m. in Sorgenti Arena, Martino Hall. Using music and stories to capture and question, the evening’s purpose is to inspire and challenge our understanding of forgiveness in the face of unspeakable violence and personal harm and hurt.


Peter Katz, Canadian songwriter and musician will perform a concert featuring the song, “Forgiveness” written by Katz to honor Michael Berg, father of Nicholas Berg, a brutally murdered American worker in Iraq by Al Qaida in 2006. After the concert, Michael Berg will share his story of refusing to perpetuate hate by celebrating the capture and killing of his son’s killer.


Expressing both aching sadness and intense joy, Peter Katz’s songwriting, carried by his passionate, intimate voice, guides us through the gamut of human experience. Katz, a Canada Broadcasting Corporation Galaxie Rising Star Award Winner, is dedicated to telling powerful stories through his music. The stunning “Oliver’s Tune” is inspired by a CBC interview with the late Oliver Schroer, a Canadian fiddle player who passed away from leukemia but decided to play one final concert a month before he died. “The Fence” is a haunting song that imagines the experience of Matthew Shepard, the Laramie, Wyoming student who was tied to a fence and left to die because he was gay. And the soaring, cathartic track, “First of the Last to Know,” explores the story of anyone working to emerge as a fully realized human being.


Katz’s inspiration for the song, “Forgiveness” sprung from a 2006 interview he heard on CBC with Michael Berg, where Berg spoke of forgiveness and breaking the chain of hate instead of retaliation for his son’s murder. His current album, “First of the Last to Know” was released in 2010 by Curve/Sony Music.


The event is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact the Institute for Forgiveness and Reconciliation at