The Homecoming

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#159: “The Homecoming”
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Matthew 6:12

12Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.

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“The Homecoming” is episode #159 of the Adventures in Odyssey audio series. It was written by Paul McCusker, and originally aired on July 20, 1991.


Richard Maxwell returns to Odyssey to try and ask forgiveness from the townsfolk. It's hard for Richard, as some people don't want to forgive what he's done.


Richard Maxwell is back in town, and immediately everyone is on guard, especially Tom Riley and Lucy Cunningham-Schultz. Tom is instantly suspicious of Maxwell, while Lucy just wants to steer clear of him. Richard asks to talk with Whit. In their conversation, Richard reveals the real reason he’s back in town: He wants to apologize to the people he hurt. Whit is happy to hear it, but he clarifies the difference between merely apologizing and asking for forgiveness. The latter means that Richard needs their pardon for what he’s done.

Richard says he wants to ask forgiveness. He starts with Whit, who immediately grants Richard’s request. Richard moves on, asking Connie, Eugene, Lucy, and Tom for forgiveness. Connie forgives Richard almost instantly. Eugene grants him conditional forgiveness. That is, he will accept Richard’s apology with the understanding that they won’t become anything more than acquaintances.

When it comes to Lucy and Tom, however, Richard runs into large and painful brick walls. Lucy is still hurting from the way Richard used her during the Blackgaard/Applesauce fiasco. Tom refuses to trust Richard any further than Tom can throw him. Richard decides to leave town. But just before he boards the bus, Lucy rushes up and tells Richard that she’s done a lot of soul searching and realizes that she, too, must forgive him. Richard thanks her and leaves. Only Tom is left holding his grudge...which he and Whit later bring humbly and earnestly before the Lord.

This plot section is too short and should be expanded. »

Discussion Questions

  1. What is the difference between apologizing to someone and asking for their forgiveness?
    • Which do you think is harder to do?
  2. What does the Bible say about forgiveness?
  3. Do you need forgiveness for something you’ve done?
  4. Do you need to forgive someone else?


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Character Mentioned By
Hank Bonsall Tom Riley
Regis Blackgaard Tom Riley
Nicholas Adamsworth Jeff (a)
Connie Kendall Richard Maxwell
Mr. Schultz Lucy Cunningham-Schultz
Mrs. Cunningham-Schultz Lucy Cunningham-Schultz




Richard Maxwell: Once again, you've saved my life in more ways than I deserve. Boy, that was poetic.

Tom Riley: What does he want?

Eugene Meltsner: Well, Mr. Maxwell, if I may be so frank, I'd like to say that seeing you now is approximately 1.2 million years sooner than I would have preferred.

Richard Maxwell: Is that a yes?
Eugene Meltsner: A conditional yes, yes.
Richard Maxwell: I'll take it.
Eugene Meltsner: If it wasn't locked down you'd take it.

Richard Maxwell: I am... sorry, Mr. Riley. And I hope you can forgive me... one of these days.
Tom Riley: Just get out. Get out.

Tom Riley: I knew I should forgive him. But it hurts! Before God, it hurts more than I can say!