Tag Archives: prodigal son

Which son are you?

7 Mar

The topic of siblings usually provokes conversation. Siblings may consider some of us oldest children bossy even though parents might use the words dependable and responsible.

Many of us have the wild or special-needs brother or sister who absorbs more attention than the rest. This is the one who wrecks the car or who gets taken to the police station for spraying graffiti on garage doors or stays at a friend’s house without asking or telling.

My next younger sister needed constant attention to learn to speak because she was severely hard of hearing. Mother put all her teaching skills to use on constant phonics lessons. If Jan held her ears or suggested any of the rest of us were bothering her, we got a reprimand. Naturally my sister became very creative in using her ears against us – sounds as if I haven’t entirely let that go!

I’m the dutiful oldest child who spent a week retying the bamboo shades on the porch and painted the cattle sheds. I’m the one who could do errands the fastest.

I’m not the prodigal younger son in the parable Jesus tells this Sunday. I’m the older son who is supposed to celebrate the homecoming of my brother who hurt our father, wasted money on his wild friends, and lost everything.

How do you characterize yourself – more a wild, willful, wasteful child or more a responsible, obedient, dutiful child?

This excerpt from Sunday By Sunday is by Joan Mitchell, CSJ

Gospel Reflection for March 10, 2013, 4th Sunday of Lent

4 Mar

My son, you are with me always, and everything I have is yours.  But we had to celebrate and rejoice!  This brother of yours was dead and lives again.  He was lost and is found.

Luke 15.31-32

In Jesus’ parable of the prodigal son, Luke holds up not only a model of conversion in the younger son but also a characterization of Jesus’ faithful and forgiving Father.  The father in the parable does not wait for his son to arrive home but runs to meet him, embraces him, and kisses him lovingly.

The father never allows the son to finish the confession he has planned, which ends in asking to be a hired a hand.  The son’s act of coming home acknowledges his new desire to reconnect as much as any words can say.  The father restores him as a son with robe, ring, and sandals and sets a homecoming table for him.

But the elder son resents his father welcoming his brother home.  Will he join the celebration as his father urges?

What does the father in the parable tell us about God?


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