R. (8a) The Lord is kind and merciful.
Bless the LORD, O my soul;
and all my being, bless his holy name.
Bless the LORD, O my
and forget not
all his benefits.
R. The Lord is kind and
He pardons all your iniquities,
he heals all your ills.
He redeems your life from destruction,
he crowns you with kindness and
R. The Lord is kind and
He will not always chide,
nor does he keep his wrath forever.
Not according to our sins does he deal
nor does he
requite us according to our crimes.
Lord is kind and merciful.
For as the heavens are high above the earth,
so surpassing is his kindness toward
those who fear him.
As far as the east is from the west,
so far has he put our transgressions from us.
Tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to
listen to Jesus, but the Pharisees
and scribes began to complain, saying, This man welcomes sinners and eats with them. So to them Jesus addressed this parable. A man had two sons, and the younger son said to his
father, Father, give me the share
of your estate that should come to me. So the father divided the property between them. After a few days, the younger son collected all his
belongings and set off to a distant
country where he squandered his
inheritance on a life of dissipation.
When he had freely spent everything, a severe famine struck that country, and he found himself in dire need. So he hired himself out to one of the local citizens who sent him to his farm to tend the swine. And he longed to eat his fill of the pods on which the
swine fed, but nobody gave him
any. Coming to his senses he
thought, How many of my father's
hired workers have more than enough
food to eat, but here am I, dying
from hunger. I shall get up and go
to my father and I shall say to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I no longer deserve to be called your son; treat me as you would treat one of your hired workers.
So he got up and went back to his
father. While he was still a long
way off, his father caught sight of
him, and was filled with compassion. He ran to his son, embraced him and kissed him. His son said to him, Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you; I no longer deserve to be called your
son. But his father ordered his
servants, Quickly, bring the finest
robe and put it on him; put a ring
on his finger and sandals on his feet.
Take the fattened calf and slaughter it. Then let us celebrate with a feast, because this son of mine was dead, and has come to life again; he was lost, and has been found. Then the celebration began. Now the older son had been out in the
field and, on his way back, as he
neared the house, he heard the sound
of music and dancing. He called one
of the servants and asked what this might mean. The servant said to him, Your brother has returned and your father has slaughtered the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.
angry, and when he refused to enter the house, his father came out and pleaded with
him. He said to his father in reply, Look, all these years I served you and not once
did I disobey your orders; yet you never gave me even a young goat to feast on with my
friends. But when your son returns who swallowed up your property with
prostitutes, for him you slaughter the fattened calf. He said to him, My son, you
are here with me always; everything I have is yours. But now we must celebrate and
rejoice, because your brother was dead and has come to life again; he was lost and has