I know that some of you may wonder why I wrote “The Prodigal Son.” The priest from today’s gospel talked about Easter, of course, and Jesus risen, but he also mentioned of the Prodigal
Son from a few weekends ago, as well.
He talked about how that was one of Jesus’ most powerful stories, that God was willing to forgive us for all our sins…that no matter how much we sin, He will welcome us back. (He also did mention that Jesus dying on the cross was “a zillion times more important” than this gospel, because God did not wait for the repentant sinner to come to him, but already forgave them.)
The fact that the priest talked about the Prodigal Son really hit me because you usually don’t hear about the Prodigal Son on Easter. He talked of the son wasting his inheritance and partying all the time and when he ends up sleeping with the pigs, that the Father welcomed him back and forgave him. This doesn’t mean that you can just go on a sinning spree because you know that if you mean that you’re sorry later, than it’s okay. You may even be committing a mortal sin (which occurs when (1) the sin is of grave/serious matter (2) you know that it is a sin and (3) you commit the sin with full deliberate consent [which means you are committing the sin because you want to not because someone is forcing you…]).
But what really caught me about the Prodigal Son was the “faithful” son that was angry that the Father had accepted his brother back after sinning so much. I think that this is such a great lesson in the Prodigal Son that is often omitted and if it isn’t omitted, it is often skipped in the homily. This jealous son teaches us that as the faithful, we should not be angry at God or our brothers and sisters when God forgives them and welcomes them back to His Home and His heart. We should not be jealous or full of pride (two of the seven deadly sins) and say to God that it’s unfair for Him to welcome them Home.
We should love our brothers and sisters no matter what. When I was younger I asked my parents if there were tiers in Heaven and Hell…like those who sinned more got punished more and those who were more faithful were a “closer” tier to God. I know now that that is impossible, at least in Heaven, because God loves all His children of equal magnitude (but don’t get me wrong, it’s an infinite magnitude) and He wants us to see that we are all equals and should love each other with agape, the infinite love He has for us.
Happy Easter to all!