Sunday of the Prodigal Son

Today is the second Sunday of the Triodion — the preparation for Great Lent — where Orthodox churches everywhere read the parable of the Prodigal Son. Fr. John has been talking about that and about the “already and not yet” of the Christian life that is so strongly emphasized during Lent. He likes to quote from 1 John 3:

Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.

Weekends are not really a part of Lent, and so whereas on the weekdays there is an emphasis on repentance, pilgrimage, exile, and adventure, with overtones of “bright sadness,” because we are not fully there yet, and are in need of purification; on the weekends we emphasize the “we now are” of being home, that the Kingdom has appeared on earth, and we are children of God.

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