4the Sunday of Lent ~ Laetare Sunday ~ 27 March 2022 ~ Bible Readings for Mass: I: Joshua 5: 9a-12; Responsorial: Psalm 34; II: II Corinthians 5: 17-21; Gospel: Luke 15: 1-3, 11-32
Today is the 4th Sunday of Lent. It is also Laetare Sunday from the Latin introit: “REJOICE O, Jerusalem”. This Lenten call to rejoice is rooted in the joy for which there is nothing to compare, the joy of reconciliation. With God. And with each other. It is the unbroken cord of holy love from God that penetrates and perseveres through our sin, rebellion, ignorance, doubts, and fears. It is the cord stained by the blood of Jesus in His holy passion. And it is the cord that would be woven into the purest white of the robes He wore after His resurrection. It is from the very heart of God, the call, the longing to be reconciled and to be a people of reconciliation. Through, in, and with God, and each other.
Our Gospel reading for this Sunday shares the great parable of the Prodigal Son. Here is a poetic reflection of the prodigal’s journey of which most of us can relate and understand.
Eager, stubborn the boy had left,
off to live his life he set.
From the father’s wealth he bore,
From the father’s heart he tore,
Love and hopes with tears he gave,
the son his share of what he’d saved.
The son the road quickly trod.
And spread his given wealth abroad.
Seeking pleasure and sensual gain,
Soon he found but loss and pain.
Money gone and hunger found,
In lonely places the boy did scrounge.
For wasted food with swine he fought,
as solace for his hunger sought.
The empty pangs of stomach hid,
not the pains of heart, but bid.
Longing for the meals of home,
Even a servants place to own.
Struggling in his sorrow.
Aching in his loss,
His father’s gate,
in humble tears,
he arose and sought.
And for his son his thoughts did trend.
As his pain, his heart did rend.
Looking, watching the homeward path
His wearied hopes would not slack.
Then one day, his eyes with tears did fill.
With joy and love did they spill.
For up the road in rags so humbled,
the son he sought did weakly stumble.
Running fast his child to embrace
the father ran the eager race.
In broken sorrow his child had trod.
In love and joy the father called,