Episode 626: “Pandora’s Box”

The Radcliff family is a paradox of centuries. Mother, Kate, lives in the 19th Century, running an antique shop and avoiding technology as much as possible. Father, Charlie, lives in the 20th Century with his wide-screen TV and microwave. But Sarah, their 13 year-old daughter, and Millie, their kindergartner, live in the 21st Century, relying on the Internet to help them with their school projects. One night while researching Hawaii, Sarah stumbles onto a pornographic website. Charlie and Kate insist she turn it off immediately, upset that this sort of material is so easily accessible.

At the antique store, Kate meets Monica and they become fast friends. Meanwhile Tess, Millie’s teacher, avoids Millie’s questions about reproduction (her pet rabbit is pregnant) suggesting that her mom and dad will want to give her those answers. Kiki, Sarah’s world-wise pal, takes her to the cyber café run by Andrew. At work, Charlie’s co-worker shows him some porn sites on the web. Charlie is intrigued and, before he knows it, has spent an hour surfing these sites. When his boss catches him, he is fired. Charlie tells Kate about the firing, but he lies, saying he was only on the sites for a minute. Despite this, Kate insists on getting rid of the computer. Charlie offers it to Andrew who agrees to rent it for the café. Charlie begins spending time there, preparing his resume.

Sarah, furious that the computer is gone, spends time at Kiki’s house surfing the web. They begin a webchat with “Dean16,” who sends them his picture – he looks like a handsome teenaged boy. But as Sarah sends Dean her picture we learn that Dean is much, much older than he’s portraying. Tess brings Millie home from school and talks to Kate and Charlie about Millie’s questions. They agree to have a speak with her soon. When Kate talks to Monica about protecting her children from the Internet, Monica reminds her that it is more important to equip children with the tools they need to protect themselves.

Meanwhile, Sarah arranges to meet Dean face to face. Charlie admits his lie to Kate, telling her he cannot get the images he’s seen out of his head. This further affects Kate’s hatred of technology. Later, Sarah meets Dean at a local park. At first she is nervous that he seems so much older, but he sweet-talks her into believing he is only 19. She agrees to go back to his apartment. Monica and Andrew find Charlie and Kate, and they reveal to them that they are angels. They tell them of the danger that Sarah is in. At Dean’s apartment he quietly slips some drugs into Sarah’s drink, and becomes upset when she claims she’s not thirsty. As Dean moves to attack Sarah, Charlie and Andrew arrive. Dean attacks Andrew with a bat, but Andrew is able to stop him. In anger, Andrew smashes Dean’s computer. Monica then delivers a message to the Radcliff family – that they have been the victims of an evil force. She also tells them that the Internet is an exciting gift from God but, like many of His gifts, it can be abused. That is why is it important to take precautions with the Internet. A few days later, Sarah unveils a new web page – for Kate’s antique store! Charlie decides to start his own business too – managing the cyber café.

Episode 625: “Mother’s Day”

Celine sits at the grave of her friend Petey Carmichael giving him an update of the things that have happened since his death. She tells Petey that his mother, Audrey, hasn’t been doing too well since he left — she refuses to compose music and she drinks frequently. Celine asks Petey if he can send some angels to help her. Tess and Monica reminisce about Audrey. Tess tells Monica that Audrey hasn’t forgiven them for helping her say goodbye to Petey. Since Audrey refuses to see Tess, Monica and Andrew, another angel, Emma is assigned to Audrey. Emma, a very fastidious angel, rents a room from Audrey and immediately begins spring cleaning the cluttered house.

Meanwhile, Andrew is assigned to Liz, a tough and demanding radio talk show host who has also lost a child, though many years ago. Andrew proposes a series of radio shows on addiction. At the same time, Monica begins to appear in Audrey’s dreams, repeating the phrase, “That’s what makes you strong.” The next morning, Audrey begins to sing a song called, “That’s What Makes You Strong” but cannot remember how she knows the tune. As she sings, Emma quietly turns on the tape recorder. Later, Celine tells Tess that her family is moving and she won’t be able to take care of Audrey anymore. Tess reveals to Celine that she and Emma are angels, and tells her that they’ll all have to work together to help Audrey.

That night, Celine hears the recording and calls in to Liz’s talk show about alcoholism in hopes of finding help for Audrey. Celine plays some of Audrey’s song over the radio, but quickly hangs up when Audrey enters. Liz is shocked to hear the song — she wrote it years ago, singing it only to the child that she lost. Meanwhile, Audrey chastises Celine for playing the song, sending her home in tears. Liz begins to ask her listeners for more information on Celine. Celine’s father calls in to the program and speaks with Liz. The next morning, Liz and Andrew arrive at Audrey’s house, and Liz tells Audrey she is her mother. Audrey wants nothing to do with her, believing that Liz abandoned her years ago. Liz explains that her father kidnapped Audrey soon after they divorced and Liz has been searching for her ever since. Nonetheless, Audrey is unable to forgive Liz for not being around to help her through Petey’s death.

Monica reveals to Audrey that she is an angel, assuring her that Petey is with God. Monica tells Audrey that she has to give Him the pieces of her broken heart and He will restore her. Monica reminds her that sometimes God sends an angel, and sometimes He sends a mother. Liz tells Audrey that she is also an alcoholic and that she knows what it is like to lose a child — she will help her on the difficult road ahead. As the angels watch, Liz and Audrey celebrate Mother’s Day at Petey’s grave by singing a duet of “That’s What Makes You Strong.”

Episode 624: “A Clown’s Prayer”

Monica and Tess laugh as they look at themselves in the mirrors of the fun house at the Grazeldi circus. Tess reminds Monica that, like their distorted mirror images, the circus is all about illusion. Davey Tucker seems like the luckiest boy in the world because he lives at the circus, yet Davey dreams about being a regular boy. Davey’s father Leroy, an achondroplasic dwarf, works as a circus clown. Since Wally Grazeldi is unable to pay the performers, many are quitting the show. But Leroy steadfastly remains, and Tess, a “talent scout” offers the talents of Monica as a clown and Andrew as a ringmaster. What Wally really needs is a human cannonball. He asks Leroy, but Leroy refuses — he has a phobia of small spaces. As Monica is coached in clowning by Leroy, she begins to learn more about the Tuckers — how close the father and son have been since Davey’s mother, also a little person, died when he was a baby.

Davey befriends Mary Jane, a local schoolgirl who is teased by her classmates for being overweight. Mary Jane tells Davey to keep his father’s size a secret, unless he wants to be ridiculed like her. Davey begins to attend the local school quickly winning over the other kids, even Eddie the bully. When Andrew comes by the school to drop off Davey’s lunch, Davey tells the kids that Andrew is his father. Later, Andrew talks with Davey about his lie. Davey says that he just wants to fit in. The next day after school, Davey goes to the house of his teacher, Mrs. Donovan, to bake cookies and returns to the circus very late. Leroy, being overly-protective, is furious and punishes Davey. Late that night, Davey sneaks out of the circus and goes to Mrs. Donovan’s, leaving a note for Leroy.

The next day, Leroy has a meeting with Mrs. Donovan who tells him she believed Andrew was Davey’s father. Leroy is heartbroken. Mrs. Donovan, a frequent foster mom, tells him that all children are embarrassed about their parents at some time. As Leroy leaves the school, the children, led by Eddie, point and laugh at him as Davey watches sadly. Later, Leroy tells Monica that he has arranged for Davey to stay with Mrs. Donovan, who can give him the “normal life” he desires. When Monica protests, Leroy reveals that Davey’s mother died while trying to provide him with a normal life — of complications from a dangerous limb-lengthening procedure. At school, Tess offers free circus passes to the children. All are excited except for Davey, who, a spited Mary Jane reveals, doesn’t want to see his “midget” father. The children laugh and tease Davey.

On the night of the circus, Wally is still looking for a human cannonball, so Leroy volunteers. Andrew reveals to Monica that Leroy won’t live through the stunt. Tess tells Davey what Leroy’s about to do and Davey rushes to the circus to stop him. But when Leroy approaches the cannon, he becomes afraid and backs out. Monica reveals to Leroy that she is an angel, reminding him that he was made in the image of the God who loves him. Monica tells him that God seeks out His wayward children and Leroy needs to do the same for Davey. Leroy and Davey are reconciled, but the circus still awaits a human cannonball. As the cannon blasts, Monica and Andrew are proud to see that Tess has performed the stunt as the crowd roars in pleasure.

Episode 623: “Monica’s Bad Day”

Late one night in New York City, a desperate Monica hails a cab and demands that Merl, the driver, take her to the Queensborough Bridge – she says if she doesn’t reach the bridge by 10 pm, someone will die. Flynn Hodge, the proprietor of Flynn’s Bar and Grill also hops in the cab, claiming Monica hasn’t paid her dinner bill. Tess and Andrew watch from the curb, noting that Monica is having a really bad day. In the cab, Monica tells the men that she is an angel and they think she is crazy. Monica reminds Flynn that it was something he did earlier in the day that led to this desperate situation.

Flashback to that morning, Flynn rushes to the bank to appeal a foreclosure on his restaurant. Due to Monica’s poor parallel parking job, Flynn misses his meeting and, despite Monica’s apologies, he yells at her. Tess counsels Monica to forgive Flynn right then rather than harbor her own anger and take it out on someone else. Meanwhile, Andrew counsels Simon to meet his estranged son Russell at Flynn’s restaurant. Later, while Tess and Monica eat lunch at Flynn’s, Monica, still in a foul mood, drops Flynn’s cell phone in the fish tank to cease its annoying beeping. As a result, Flynn misses an important call from the bank. Flynn then yells at Ronnie, the dishwasher, who spends his spare time searching for his missing brother. The cycle continues as Ronnie yells at the waitress, who yells at the bartender, who yells at the customers, including Simon and Russell, who refuse to reconcile. Flynn is also rude to Wendy, a lone customer who leaves the restaurant shortly after she arrives.

Ultimately, the bank loan officer visits the restaurant and finds the customers and staff to be so unfriendly he refuses to reverse the foreclosure. Believing that all is lost, Flynn rants at Monica who is so overwhelmed that she faints. While she recovers, Tess allows Monica to see what would have happened to all these people had she not given in to her anger. In this fantasy, Flynn receives the call from the bank and arranges for an extension on the foreclosure. He is so happy he decides to promote Ronnie. The good mood infects the restaurant and Simon and Russell begin to reconcile. Flynn chats with Wendy, and, as they share their stories, Wendy reveals her depression over the death of her husband. Her grief is so intense that she had planned to jump off the Queensborough Bridge at 10 pm. After seeing what could have been, Monica understands that Wendy has gone to the bridge because Flynn was not able to comfort her.

As it nears 10 pm, the cab arrives at the bridge and Monica and Flynn find Wendy about to jump. Monica reveals to Wendy that she is an angel and apologizes to her for her role in the chain of events, reminding her of God’s love. Flynn also apologizes for being rude to Wendy, offering to be a much-needed friend. On the way back to the restaurant, Flynn recognizes Ronnie’s missing brother and reunites the two. Andrew persuades Simon to reconcile with Russell. When Flynn announces a celebration to close the restaurant, Wendy offers to help financially. Finally, the angels rejoice at God’s ability to put right what went wrong.

Episode 622: “Stealing Hope”

Ricky Hauk has just received the news that he’s being laid off from his dead-end job as a mechanic at Al’s Gas Station. Ricky vents his frustration by writing poetry on the bathroom wall, quickly erasing it before it can be preserved for posterity. Monica is hired to take inventory at the station, and she encourages Ricky to pursue his writing. When Shelley, a local college student, arrives with her snobby boyfriend Marshall, Ricky is immediately smitten. When Marshall notices Ricky’s college hat, he accuses him of being a poseur, and the boys exchange words. As Marshall and Shelley leave, Ricky discovers Shelley dropped her school I.D.

Later, Ricky agrees to help his little brother Joey win the Invention Convention at the College. When Shelley returns to the station in search of her I.D., Ricky claims to be a student at the college. Shelley suggests he enroll in her writing class. Ricky agrees to check it out. Ricky’s mother Ellen is frustrated to find out about Ricky’s plans to take the class — they need his income to make ends meet. The next day, Ricky is resigned to apply for work at Taco Town. Instead he goes to Shelley’s class, taught by Andrew, where he sees Tess, another student. Andrew’s teaching is inspiring, but Ricky is scared off by Marshall.

Back at the station, Ricky again writes a poem on the wall. Monica offers him a blank notebook to write in, but when Ricky tries it, he has a flashback to his childhood: his father abuses him for writing on his racing form. The next time Ricky tries to attend class, Andrew catches him. Andrew agrees to let him sit in for one week, but then he must officially enroll. During class, Andrew invites Marshall to read a poem. Ricky is shocked to hear Marshall read his poem — copied from the bathroom wall. Defeated, Ricky swipes the rearview mirror from Marshall’s car. Meanwhile, Monica helps Joey finish his invention — a forgetting machine. Ricky complains to Monica about Marshall’s plagiarism. Monica tells Ricky to use it as an encouraging sign that his writing is good. Still frustrated, Ricky throws the rearview mirror in the garbage.

That night, Pearson and Smitty, friends of Ricky’s, drive up in Marshall’s stolen car. Ricky sends them away. The next day, Joey finds the last part for his invention — Marshall’s discarded rearview mirror. Ricky tells Ellen that he has been hired at Taco Town. At the convention, Joey unveils his invention. Marshall, one of the judges, recognizes the mirror and accuses Ricky of stealing his car. The men fight and when Andrew breaks it up, Ricky admits to stealing the mirror, but not his car. He also accuses Marshall of stealing his poem. Tess comes to Ricky’s defense, saying she knows who really stole the car.

In an empty classroom, Monica reveals to Ricky that she is an angel, telling him he’s put up a wall to block out the past, but this wall has also blocked out his dreams. God wants him to tear down this wall and write his words down so he can be free. Later, Andrew asks Marshall to recite the poem. Marshall can’t. Ricky, however, recites it on the spot. Ellen is moved by the poem about Ricky’s father and asks Ricky for forgiveness for remaining in an abusive situation. Ellen asks Ricky to write the poem down for her. He says he will. The angels watch as the newly restored family leaves arm in arm.

Episode 621: “Living The Rest Of My Life”

Abby is a 71-year-old widow who spends her days watching soap operas and her nights doting on her overly-attached son Phillip and his wife Judith. Monica and Tess’s assignment is to help cut the apron strings between mother and son. When Monica arrives at Abby’s door to collect clothes for the “Living the Rest of My Life” Retirement Community fundraiser, Abby is skeptical. Later, when Tess tells her about the activities that take place at “Living the Rest of My Life,” Abby agrees to a visit to see for herself.

Abby is excited to find many other seniors who keep busy with all sorts of activities, though she tries to mask her enthusiasm. She meets Ramone, a young graffiti artist who serves mandatory community service hours by helping Andrew, the Community’s handyman, paint the hallways. Abby also meets Lois, a retired artist and widow, who hides in her apartment angrily refusing to socialize with the other community members. Abby uses Lois and Ramone as reasons why she wouldn’t want to move here, but her real feelings are apparent when she returns a few days later with her treasured pecan pie.

When Phillip realizes where his mother has been spending her time, he insists she put any thoughts of moving out of her head, reminding her of how much he needs her. But when Phillip forgets Abby’s birthday, she decides it is time to begin her new life and moves into “Living the Rest of My Life.” Phillip and Judith arrive for a visit, and Phillip desperately attempts to sweet talk his mother into returning home. Abby is settling in, however, and is unwilling to return, paying for her first month’s rent with some cash she’d saved away. Phillip is angry and storms out, while Judith, unbeknownst to Phillip, gives Abby her checkbook which Phillip had been holding for her. Meanwhile, Lois and Ramone argue about art and insult each other’s work in the process. Abby comforts Lois by writing a check for one of her paintings, a favorite of Abby’s since she and her husband’s honeymoon. In turn, Lois apologizes to Ramone and revalidates his work.

At the fundraiser, Abby sells some of her vintage hats, and is delighted to have Phillip and Judith visit. She shows them her new painting until Lois reclaims it, announcing that Abby’s check bounced. Phillip then admits that he depleted Abby’s life savings by making bad investments. Abby is shocked but forgives Phillip and plans to move back home, no longer able to afford her new life. But when Abby oversees Phillip stealing cash from her personal belongings, she can no longer make any excuses for him. Tess reveals herself to be an angel, and tells Abby that God understands her situation. He lets His children face the consequences of their actions, and she must do the same for Phillip. Abby insists that Phillip pay back all the money he lost, and tells him that he cannot be in her life until he pulls his together. Abby prepares to move out of the retirement community, until Ramone announces that he’s learned that Lois’ artwork is worth a fortune. Lois then offers to pay Abby’s rent so she can remain a part of the family at “Living the Rest of My Life.”

Episode 620: “Quality Time”

Toni Cozzi organizes her life the same way she runs her family — in adherence to a rigid schedule. Monica and Tess watch unseen as Toni prepares for her day, completing even the simplest of tasks with perfect timing — Toni’s way of keeping her family safe. That family includes: patriarch Paul, an idea man who is always preoccupied, Amy, a high school volleyball player, and Angelo, the youngest, whose specialty is playing the tuba and getting into mischief. The family is just days away from the grand opening of their new pizza parlor “Paul and Toni’s Perfect Pizza.”

Monica is hired as a chef and Andrew as a handyman. As Monica begins making the pizza, it becomes apparent that Toni won’t reveal the secret of her family sauce — not even to her own family! At the same time, Toni worries about Amy’s increasing appetite and water intake, and about her general moodiness, scared that Amy is getting into drugs. When Amy collapses on the volleyball court, the doctors diagnose her with juvenile diabetes. Tess, the nurse, teaches the family about the condition. Since the body has stopped making insulin, Amy will have to test her blood and give herself insulin shots. Toni immediately takes charge, planning to beat the disease with perfect scheduling. Tess reminds them that, as of yet, there is no cure for diabetes. Amy insists that none of her friends know about this, especially not her boyfriend Matt. While Amy recuperates at the hospital, everyone at the restaurant pitches in to do her duties.

Monica is reassigned to be the waitress and Andrew becomes the chef. When Amy comes home, Toni wakes up in the middle of every night to make sure that Amy has taken her shot. Paul, on the other hand, is squeamish around needles and can’t help. At the next game, Angelo tells a shocked Matt about the diabetes. The coach tells Amy that, in light of her condition, he wants her mom to travel with the team. Amy is horrified and decides to quit. The day before the grand opening, everyone rushes to prepare. When Toni learns that Paul has picked up the wrong uniforms and that Amy hasn’t taken her latest shot, she breaks down. Frustrated, Amy leaves to find Matt. When Matt tells Amy that he knows about her diabetes, Amy gives herself a shot to show him how easy it is, but she isn’t careful with the levels. Upset that Amy hid this from him, Matt breaks up with her. As Matt leaves, Amy becomes very sick.

Monica finds her and takes her to the hospital. When Paul and Toni hear the news they leave the restaurant for the hospital, accidentally leaving an apron on the lit stove. Soon a fire starts, and Andrew arrives to rescue Angelo and to douse the flames. When Paul and Toni return with a recovered Amy, they find a charred kitchen. First Paul and Toni begin to fight, then Amy and Angelo join in, each blaming the other for this setback. In the midst of the chaos, Monica reveals to the family that she is an angel, and reminds them that they need to make God a family member, and the first guest in the new restaurant. The family prays, committing themselves to God. Everyone pitches in to clean up the restaurant for the opening. Just before they open the doors to a huge crowd, Toni reveals the secret ingredient in the pizza sauce — nutmeg. Now it’s a family secret!

Episode 619: “True Confessions”

As Monica and Tess discuss the end of winter, Tess reminds Monica that in some places winter lasts all year round. One such place is the Kewanee Women’s Correctional Facility where Monica’s assignment, Carla Robinson, is doing 25 years to life for murder. Monica joins the prison staff as a social worker and begins to implement a prison theater program. With Tess’ help as a prison guard, Monica is able to get a small group of the prisoners to open up about themselves and their crimes. Carla though claims to be innocent and spends her time trying to get a pardon.

Meanwhile, Andrew is a hospice nurse to Santos Gonzales, the father of Orbie, the man Carla was convicted of murdering. Even after several years, Santos is still bitter about Orbie’s death. At the prison, Monica chooses the play “Agnes of God” for the women to perform for the rest of the inmates. “Agnes of God” tells the story of a young nun who becomes pregnant as a result of being raped. Agnes is accused of murdering the baby, though she has blocked out any memories of the incident. Monica casts Carla as Agnes. As rehearsals commence, Monica begins to believe that Carla may be innocent of her crime, but Andrew arrives to say that Carla is guilty — he was there. Tess tells Monica that Carla isn’t simply lying – she actually believes that she is innocent, and, like Agnes, has blocked her memory of the tragic event.

As Santos gets closer to death, Andrew pleads with him to pray for peace rather than for vengeance against Carla. Monica begins to make progress with Carla, learning of her suicide attempts and the daughter she hasn’t seen in years. When Monica asks Carla about Orbie, she gives her version of the events — that her boyfriend, conducting a drug deal, shot Orbie, an innocent bystander. Before Monica can challenge this version of events, Carla receives news that her conviction has been overturned. Despite her imminent release, Carla agrees to still participate in the first performance of “Agnes of God.” During the climax of the play when Agnes regains the memories of her own tragedy, Carla begins to have flashbacks about Orbie’s death — and about her involvement.

Though upset, Carla finishes the show and is soon released from prison. When Santos hears of Carla’s pardon, he insists on asking her forgiveness for all the years he’d cursed her. Carla meets her daughter Meredith for a tearful reunion at a local diner where Tess “moonlights” as the waitress. Andrew arrives with Santos but Carla is too overwhelmed to speak with him. In the storeroom, Monica reveals to Carla that she is an angel and helps Carla pray for the ability to remember the truth. Carla finally recalls that she accidentally pulled the trigger in a drug-induced haze. She begs for God’s, and then Santos’, forgiveness and then tells Meredith that their life together will be postponed — she must first go to the court and tell the truth.

Episode 618: “Bar Mitzvah”

Ross Berger, an 83-year old owner of a successful chain of exercise gyms, credits his recovery from a stroke to his own physical strength and will. He considers himself a self- made man and believes religion is for the weak. Ross’ son Alan, on the other hand, is a man of faith in God and a well-respected college professor who deeply values his Jewish heritage. Alan’s son Aaron, who is preparing for his bar mitzvah, admires his grandfather’s physical strength more than his father’s spiritual faith.

Monica and Tess agree to help Ross produce an exercise video for stroke victims, while Andrew tutors Aaron in Hebrew, teaching him the true meaning of the bar mitzvah — the acceptance of his new responsibilities as a man of God. Alan’s wife Connie is worried about Ross’ influence on Aaron, but is even more concerned about Alan’s frequent dizzy spells, one of which results in a serious car accident. When Alan receives the news that he is dying from a rapidly growing brain tumor, he confides in Ross. Despite Alan’s pleas to spend his final days with his family, Ross pledges to find better doctors and newer treatments, promising to fix the situation with his own resources. Soon after, Alan collapses and is taken to the hospital. Even while ill, Alan is concerned with Aaron’s bar mitzvah, asking Ross to participate in the ceremony if he is unable. Ross agrees and also prays with Alan, but when Aaron oversees this, he believes his grandfather has weakened and has given up trying to save Alan.

When Andrew arrives as the Angel of Death, Alan realizes that his faith has been justified, and he dies in peace. Aaron is devastated and angry, both at God and at Ross for not saving Alan. Aaron refuses to proceed with the ceremony, citing his grandfather’s belief that religion is for the weak as a reason. Meanwhile, Monica reveals to Ross that she is an angel, and encourages him to humble himself before God and accept His love. The next day at the ceremony, the rabbi announces that there will be no bar mitzvah. Ross then steps forward to state his desire to be bar mitzvah’d. Ross tells Aaron that he was wrong to believe religion was for the weak and admits that Alan was right all along. Grandfather and grandson join each other in reading the Torah, embracing their Jewish faith and heritage.

Episode 617: “Here I Am”

Monica, Tess and Andrew find themselves in a New York art museum, each assigned to a different individual. The museum is full of visitors of all ages, including a class of young children on a field trip. Keeping a wary eye on these youngsters is Bud, an older security guard whose retirement begins at the end of the day. Bud has emotional walls between himself and the rest of the world, and it is Tess’s assignment to help knock them down. Monica is talking to Antonio, an artist who despises his displayed painting, a modern art piece comprising of yellow above black whose dividing line is flawed by a solitary bump.

In another wing, Andrew has revealed himself as the angel of death to Constance, a woman who has just discovered that she has cancer and is trying to determine what she has contributed to the world. Tess discovers that Bud is obsessed with a painting of a little girl holding flowers. Bud protects this painting more than any other in the museum, and even makes the children move to another section when they almost damage it. As the field trip relocates to the modern art wing one little boy, Morgan, pauses to look at Antonio’s painting and then catches up with the class. Antonio complains that a quick glance like that is all his painting ever gets. When Monica picks up his sketch book, she finds that he has hidden a knife within it. Antonio tells her he wants to use it to destroy his painting because it doesn’t seem to create any emotional response from people, and the failure of this work seems to be a continuation of neglect he has felt. Monica makes Antonio that God has a message for him, and he agrees to wait for fifteen minutes.

Meanwhile, Tess finally persuades Bud to open up and talk about why the painting of the girl is so important to him. The girl in the picture seems to be asking him if the world is as beautiful as the flowers in her hand, and Bud tells Tess of a harrowing experience in Vietnam that has kept him from seeing the world as a beautiful place for the last thirty years. He further reveals that this painted child has been his only friend for those years, to which Tess responds that God loves him and has living friends for him. Fifteen minutes have passed, and Antonio is about to destroy the painting when Monica reveals herself as an angel to him. She tells Antonio that God inspired him to paint what he did, though His purpose may not always seem clear. At that moment, Morgan approaches and shows Antonio a picture he has drawn. It is Antonio’s painting reproduced except now the black bump has a plant growing out of it. Morgan tells him that the painting reminds him of how he has grown from his mothers seed into a plant, and Antonio realizes that his painting does have the ability to stir emotion in others.

Watching this are Andrew and Constance, Morgan’s mother. Constance realizes that her son is the gift she has given to the world. Their assignments finished, Andrew and Monica rejoin Tess, who is still trying to get Bud to open up to other people. As they all approach the painting of the young girl, they see an older woman with a young girl who strongly resembles the one in the picture. It turns out that the older woman posed for the painting when she was young, and Bud’s friend on canvas has suddenly become the living friend Tess spoke of. A now happy Bud does his last closing of the museum, and the angels disappear.