Sunday of the Prodigal Son
My Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Christ is our midst.
Here is the Word of Life- Bulletin.
It contains some theological and spiritual insights regarding the Epistle and Gospel reading for this coming Sunday. Sunday of the Prodigal Son →
“When in my wretchedness I ran away from your fatherly love, I squandered in wickedness the riches You had given me. And so now, like the Prodigal Son, I cry out to You: “I have sinned in your sight, O Merciful Father: receive me now that I repent and make me as one of your hired servants.”
This particular Sunday, brings before our spiritual eyes the parable of the prodigal Son. This son’s condition is actually our own condition. What differentiates us from this son is actually the desire of coming to one’s self, to recognize our decadent state as well as the strength to go back to the Father with a humble and contrite heart. This parable revels God to us as a loving God rather than a punishing God, who remembers evil. It is in fact our own selfish desires that separates us from God. As a consequence we trap ourselves and make the choices we make, that ultimately bring with them darkness, pain, misunderstandings, depression etc. This is, in short, the profile of the son who got lost, which is to say that chose to separate himself from the love of his Father, thinking that he will succeed to fight against the deadly waves of this life. The Triodion period that began last Sunday brings us before our own fallen condition. This time must be regarded as invitation to a great liturgical experience as well as a spiritual journey with our Lord, the Holy Virgin and all the Saints towards the Resurrection.
“Open to me the doors of repentance, O Giver of Life; for my soul rises early to pray toward your holy Temple, bearing the temple of my body all defiled. But in your compassion, purify me by the loving kindness of your mercy.”
“When a man rebels against God and places himself far away from the fear of God, then he squanders all the divine gifts. But when we are near to God, we do not do such deeds that merit our destruction. As it is written, I beheld the Lord ever before me, for He is at my right hand, that I might not be shaken. But when we are far from God and become rebellious, we both do, and suffer, the worst things, as it is written, Behold, they that remove themselves from Thee shall perish”.
Let not those who seem worthy of credit, but teach strange doctrines, fill thee with apprehension. Stand firm, as does an anvil which is beaten. It is the part of a noble athlete to be wounded, and yet to conquer. And especially, we ought to bear all things for the sake of God, that He also may bear with us. Be ever becoming more zealous than what thou art. Weigh carefully the times. Look for Him who is above all time, eternal and invisible, yet who became visible for our sakes; impalpable and impassible, yet who became passible on our account; and who in every kind of way suffered for our sakes. (Epistle of Saint Ignatius to Saint Polycarp, 3)
Word of Wisdom
Cling your soul to divine things for it is your soul that is eternal and do not let your body take over your life. Always remember that your body supposed to be used in order to bring salvation to your soul.
Prayer of Saint Philaret of Moscow
“O Lord, grant that I may greet the coming day in peace. Help me to rely upon your holy will at every moment. In every hour of the day, reveal your will to me. Bless my association with all who surround me. Teach me to treat whatever may happen to me throughout the day with peace of soul and with firm conviction that your will governs all. In all my deeds and words, guide my thoughts and feelings. In unforeseen events, let me not forget that all are sent by you. Teach me to act firmly and wisely, without embittering and embarrassing others. Give me strength to bear the fatigue of the coming day with all that it shall bring. Direct my will. Teach me to pray. Pray yourself in me. Amen”