I have wasted the wealth which the Father gave to me, and in my wretchedness I have fed with the dumb beasts. Yearning after their food, I remained hungry and could not eat my fill. But now I return to the comassionate Father and cry out with tears: I fall down before Thy lovingkindness, receive me as a hired servant and save me.But, far from merely accepting us as hired hands, the Father inexplicably does the following:
Brethren, let us learn the meaning of this mystery. For when the Prodigal Son ran back from sin to his Father's house, his loving Father came out to meet him and kissed him. He restored to the Prodigal the tokens of his proper glory, and mystically He made glad on high, sacrificing the fatted calf. Let out lives, then, be worthy of the loving Father who has offered sacrifice, and of the glorious Victim who is the Savior of our souls.