Cardinal Seán O’Malley of Boston has issued a new Pastoral Letter on Divine Mercy called “God’s Mercy Runs to Meet Us.” The title recalls the parable of the Prodigal Son and how the father looked for his son’s return and when saw him a long way off, ran to meet him. The parable is on the one hand about a son who sins and repents, but it’s also about how the son who stayed home needs to learn mercy from his father.
Just as the father goes out to embrace the prodigal son and bring him home, he also searches for the elder son to teach him to be merciful. The father loves and forgives both sons and wants them to live in peace and harmony. The father rejoices over the conversion of the younger son and hopes for the conversion of the older, hard-working, responsible son who finds it so difficult to pardon his brother. The father explains to his elder son that he has always been with him and that all that he has remains his inheritance, but that his brother was lost and his return is worth rejoicing. The father is unconcerned about his property and his honor. He is concerned only about his sons.
He then adds other elements, including 7 ways for Catholics in the archdiocese to live mercy in the Jubilee year.