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February 24, 2017

Lessons from the story of prodigal son

…As Fr. Onyekwere decries  state of roads


Catholics have been called upon to learn a lesson from the story of the prodigal son.
Preaching at Assumpta Cathedral Owerri on Sunday September 11, the Cathedral Administrator Fr. Gerard Onyekwere said the prodigal son wanted his share of inheritance and he wanted it immediately. With the share of the wealth, he went on spending spree, indulging in whatever sinful pleasures money could buy until the money finished and he began to reflect upon just how good he had it before he went off on his lustful tangent.
“So, when the prodigal son came to his senses (Luke 15:178), that’s when he started to realize his mistakes, how he had “sinned against heaven and against his father, and decided to head home. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him, he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.”
The Cathedral Administrator noted that the father did not condemn him, or rebuke him with such angry expression like, “did I not tell you”. Despite what he did, his father still welcomed him, and restored him to his former status. Fr Onyekwere said the love of the father in the parable points to the amazing grace and endless love of our great and mighty Father.
He said that Jesus told the parable to encourage us to come home and find relief and forgiveness from God who loves us.
The Administrator called on Christians to acknowledge the truth of their sinfulness before God and recognize the need for his grace to help us become the person he wants us to be.
He said that Jesus Christ established the Sacrament of Reconciliation (Confession) so that we as sinners can obtain forgiveness for our sins and reconcile with God and the church.
He observed with concern that many Catholics no longer go to confession as regularly as  required.
He revealed that many who confess their sins worthily before a priest will tell you of the incredible feelings of peace, joy, relief they get after confession.
He regretted that some Catholics don’t go to confession for months. He encouraged such Catholic to return to the father today just like the prodigal son assuring  them that He is a merciful and compassionate father always willing to accept us back. “God wants us to come back. He is always looking for us, that is why we call him God of second chance. It does not matter how long you stopped going to confession or how mighty your sins are! Make up your mind to return to the father and he will accept you as he accepted the prodigal son.
According to Dan Delzel, “If you have been chasing the pleasures of the world in an effort to find satisfaction, just remember this, “Real peace is not found in possessions, wild living or money. It is found in meaningful relationships with our creator.”
Earlier in his remarks at the church, the administrator decried the deplorable state of roads in Owerri and appealed to the state government to do something to ameliorate the sufferings of Imolites. He noted that the rains have further worsened the already bad situation and advised the appropriate authorities to find a way of addressing this issue. “There is hardly any part of Owerri that is motorable, not to talk of the outskirts of the city.
He however called on the congregation to pray for the Governor and his team.

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