The novelist and literary critic Mary Gordon loves the story of the prodigal son, for she is a Catholic in her bones. The story, from the Gospels, is of a father’s extravagant love for his proud and dissolute boy, a child so moronic that he spends all his money and lives among swine. Finally returning home, he arrives, dirty and broke, and his father throws him a party. The standard Christian interpretation is that the love of God is like the love of this father for this son: excessive and unconditional.
About The Author
Lisa Miller is a contributing editor at New York magazine. She is the former religion columnist for the Washington Post, former senior editor of Newsweek magazine, and author of “Heaven: Our Enduring Fascination with the Afterlife.” She is a multi-year winner of the New York Newswomen’s Club prize for feature writing and has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award.