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Forgiving God always welcomes us back

Based on Jos 5:9a, 10-12; 2 Cor 5:17-21; Lk 15:1-3, 11-32

Lost and found – love, repentance, forgiveness and reconciling mercy!

The Gospel gives us Jesus’ beautiful parable of the prodigal son. It’s the story about a young son who leaves home, wastes all the money given him by his father, and then comes back to his father to say he is sorry.

The father, who never stopped loving the son, runs to him and hugs him. The father is so happy to see him he orders his servants to prepare a party to celebrate.

The older son returns home from the fields, hears the celebration and is very angry and pouts.

The father’s love for his older son is also very clear. He says to him, “My son, you are here with me always; everything I have is yours.”

The father doesn’t deny how obedient and faithful he’s been, but he’s telling his older son there is something more important right now – a son and brother was lost and has been found. The father says, “Be forgiving…. We must celebrate and rejoice.”

Jesus told this story because he wants us to understand that God is a loving and merciful Father who will always forgive us when we are sorry for our sins.

When we ask for forgiveness, God will always welcome us back. But God wants us always to forgive others and to reconcile with others, too.

Jesus generously gave us the sacraments of reconciliation and the Eucharist. He invites us to the eucharistic celebration – the Mass – to receive his grace and merciful help.

Get to the sacrament of reconciliation sometime during Lent, and receive Jesus in holy Communion as often as you can in preparation for Easter.

Loving Father, thank you for forgiving us and welcoming us back to your love.