Saturday, March 09, 2013
4TH SUNDAY OF LENT – C
MARCH 10, 2013
4TH SUNDAY OF LENT – C
Jos 5:9,10-12 / Ps 23: 1-3a. 3b-4. 5. 6 (1) / 2 Cor 5:17-21 / Lk 15:1-3,11-32
Then Yahweh said to Joshua: "Today I have removed from you the shame of Egypt." So the place is called Gilgal up to this day. The Israelites encamped in Gilgal where they celebrated the Passover on the evening of the fourteenth day of the month in the plains of Jericho. On the following day, they ate of the produce of the land: unleavened bread and roasted grain on that very day. And from that day on when they ate of the produce of the land, the manna ceased. There was no more manna for the Israelites, and that year they ate of the fruit of the land of Canaan.
2 CORINTHIANS 5:17-21
For that same reason, the one who is in Christ is a new creature. For him the old things have passed away; a new world has come. All this is the work of God who in Christ reconciled us to himself, and who entrusted to us the ministry of reconciliation. Because in Christ God reconciled the world with himself, no longer taking into account their trespasses and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. So we present ourselves as ambassadors in the name of Christ, as if God himself makes an appeal to you through us. Let God reconcile you; this we ask you in the name of Christ. He had no sin, but God made him bear our sin, so that in him we might share the holiness of God.
Meanwhile tax collectors and sinners were seeking the company of Jesus, all of them eager to hear what he had to say. But the Pharisees and the scribes frowned at this, muttering, "This man welcomes sinners and eats with them." So Jesus told them this parable: "There was a man with two sons. The younger said to his father, `Give me my share of the estate.' So the father divided his property between them. Some days later, the younger son gathered all his belongings and started off for a distant land, where he squandered his wealth in loose living. Having spent everything, he was hard pressed when a severe famine broke out in that land. So he hired himself out to a well-to-do citizen of that place, and was sent to work on a pig farm. So famished was he, that he longed to fill his stomach even with the food given to the pigs, but no one offered him anything. Finally coming to his senses, he said, `How many of my father's hired workers have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will get up and go back to my father, and say to him, Father, I have sinned against God, and before you. I no longer deserve to be called your son. Treat me then as one of your hired servants.' With that thought in mind, he set off for his father's house. He was still a long way off, when his father caught sight of him. His father was so deeply moved with compassion that he ran out to meet him, threw his arms around his neck and kissed him. The son said, `Father, I have sinned against Heaven and before you. I no longer deserve to be called your son.' But the father turned to his servants: `Quick!' he said. `Bring out the finest robe and put it on him! Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet! Take the fattened calf and kill it! We shall celebrate and have a feast, for this son of mine was dead, and has come back to life; he was lost, and is found!' And the celebration began. Meanwhile, the elder son had been working in the fields. As he returned and approached the house, he heard the sound of music and dancing. He called one of the servants and asked what it was all about. The servant answered, `Your brother has come home safe and sound, and your father is so happy about it that he has ordered this celebration, and killed the fattened calf.' The elder son became angry, and refused to go in. His father came out and pleaded with him. The son, very indignant, said, `Look, I have slaved for you all these years. Never have I disobeyed your orders. Yet you have never given me even a young goat to celebrate with my friends. Then when this son of yours returns, after squandering your property with loose women, you kill the fattened calf for him.' The father said, `My son, you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But this brother of yours was dead, and has come back to life; he was lost, and is found. And for that we had to rejoice and be glad.'"
Today's Gospel reading of the Parable of the Prodigal son is one of the most beautiful parables given by our Lord. Many writers have suggested that it should be known as the Parable of the Compassionate Father. Indeed the parable is a most graphic and convincing story of the merciful and compassionate father, a human image or reflection of the Father who is full of mercy and compassion.
We are very familiar with the story-line of the parable. The behavior of the older son is easily understandable: The father's compassionate love asks for the older son's understanding.
The Parable is a perfect presentation of God's compassionate and merciful love. The Old Testament features the almighty and powerful God who is ever merciful and full of compassion. The Old Testament is the story of God's dealings with his chosen people, through their sinfulness, perfidy and disloyalty. And each time, when they repent, through the intercession or instrumentality of his prophets, judges and leaders, God forgives.
The coming of the Son of God is the divine-human manifestation of the mercy of God personified in Jesus Christ our Lord.
Access to God's loving mercy and forgiveness was given by Christ to the Church in the Sacrament of Reconciliation: "Receive the Holy Spirit; for those whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven; for those whose sins you retain, they are retained."
The Sacrament of Reconciliation is an ecclesial act where the repentant sinner is forgiven by the priest, as representative of God and the Church. Every time we seek God's forgiveness in confession, we are like the prodigal son returning to his father and seeking re-acceptance into his father's household. And every time we receive the priest's absolution, we receive God's grace and welcome, as from the father watching from far away and waiting for the return of his long lost son.
In the Sacrament of Reconciliation we meet this merciful God and receive his forgiveness and peace.
Psalm 130, the "De Profundis", declares the ever present and available mercy of God: "But with you is forgiveness, and for that you are revered." The Psalmist personifies forgiveness as a presence before God. God's mighty power is especially seen in his readiness to forgive: precisely in his readiness to forgive, he is the almighty God.
We pray …
… for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn.
… for the speedy recovery and healing of
- Chief Samrose Anyaugo
… for the personal intentions of
- Dr Ugo Anyaugo, Oge Anyaugo,Barr (Mrs) adaugo Barbara Okoronkwo, Engr. Ifeanyi Matt Anyaugo, Chuba Anyaugo and Ezinne Cordelia Anyaugo
- Emma Q
… In Memoriam: Eliezer Billanes
… for the eternal repose of the souls of
- Bernadine Boychief
- David Orange
- Cliff Utter
- Msgr. William Van Ommeren
- Siervo P. Dizon
Eternal rest grant unto them and may perpetual light shine upon them. May they and all the dearly departed rest in peace.
… for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- Birthday: Amy Tigcom
- In Memoriam (+): Jomar K. Ochoa
… for families who are in need of healing
… for world peace and reconciliation.
Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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