Commentary on the Gospel of

Paulson Veliyannoor, CMF - Claretian Publications Philippines - Victoria Sanchez - Teacher in Madrid

Healing the Shame


Yahweh removes the “shame of Egypt” from the Israelites. Christ takes over our shame in order to shape us into new creatures, sharing in the holiness of God. The Father of the prodigal and parsimonious sons seeks to heal and redeem them.


Our strength can be our greatest shame. The strength of the younger son was his sensuousness, the ability to celebrate life. However, it was an unredeemed eros, harming himself and everyone around. When he returns, trying (clumsily) to be more rational, the Father waves away his reasoning and orders a feast, the language of eros that makes his son feel at home; and in the process teaches him how to celebrate life redemptively. The elder son was all reason, but unredeemed as well, only serving to alienate himself from others. With him, the Father engages in a redeemed reasoning, teaching him to heal wounds and build bridges.


Ask God to heal the shame that surrounds your core strength and make it redemptive for yourself and others.


What is your core strength? Has it become your Achilles’ heel? If yes, pray as above. If no, say a thanksgiving prayer.


                                                    "We should feast and rejoice".

With the parable of the prodigal son, Jesus tells us that God waits for us always, just like the father who waits for the return of his son .He leaves us free, lets us make mistakes and learn, and in this way return ,just like he did with the prodigal son. (Pope Francis) 

The story of the prodigal son is that of a dissatisfied and independent man, a consumerist, restless and daring. Who does not feel like this son? This parable speaks to us, who are on the side of those who think they are "good" and have a secure life at home. The father distributes the inheritance to the sons; with both of them he has the same care, and he lets the younger one leave the house because he asks him to do so. He leaves him free, until he can learn that there is a hunger that can only be satisfied inwardly. Out of necessity, the younger son will return to his father's house. He cannot understand how he will receive him. 

But the Gospel tells us that the encounter was like this. While he was still far away, he saw him: "And he was moved, and ran and embraced him, and began to kiss him". The house was filled with joy, her heart was overflowing with joy because she had regained the son she thought she had lost. How can one who has done wrong be so blessed, how can we allow him to spend the money without asking for an account? How can we not recognise ourselves in the irritated look of her brother?

God's measure is not our measure, and the story is still open to us. The older one enters the party and experiences that this love was also offered to him for a long time. And the two embrace each other, filling the joy of his father, who toasts and weeps tenderly. Jesus came so that we can believe and hope; he tells us this today in this beautiful parable of God's love. We are the prodigal son, the sinner, we are often also the elder son, the good, but mean and intolerant towards others.

The three characters are therefore a vivid image of what happens to us, for sometimes we behave like the father, sometimes we are the irresponsible revellers and often we are intransigent towards the one who once failed. 

Prayer: Embrace us, Father, because we have sinned against you. We want to give you back the joy of having us. We come back to you.

( Psalm 33 ) Taste and see how good the Lord is.



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