“Greenleaf” Season 3 Episode 9 Recap: It’s Over Now
The Silver Jubilee is coming up soon, and Bishop has lost his secretary,Karine, to Lady Mae and her planning. Hemust handle decorations himself, and what he comes up with are a video celebrating his 25 years as pastor and a larger-than-life poster of his face behind the pulpit. Grace lets him know he is doing too much and will need a plan for who will handle events once Mae is gone. He needs a plan soon because the divorce papers have arrived.
Though he knew the divorce was coming, James has made no arrangements. Percy essentially asks him when he’s going to move out, but James hasn’t looked for a place to live.
The next day Grace asks James about his investment. She shares her mistrust of Rochelle, but James tells her not to let Mae get in her head. Grace advises him to get his money back. Of course, he is not listening. He sees nothing suspicious about how Rochelle popped up and cozied up to him.
James goes to see Charity. Kevin, Aaron, and Nathan arealso there. Nathan starts crying as soon as James picks him up, but he goes silent with his daddy. Charity is on the couch looking disappointed and stunned. Aaron tells James that his dad, who has tried to call several times, has pancreatic cancer and is doing chemotherapy in Memphis. James may be mad at Lionel, but that’s still his friend. He tells Aaron he’ll give Lionel a call.
Next, he goes to check on Sophia, who has become reclusive. He empathizes with her about dealing with people’s concerned looks (for him because of his Parkinson’s). If you’ve forgotten about his illness, don’t blame yourself. The Parkinson’s hasn’t been brought up since the season 1 finale. We’re supposed to remember he has it by his hands that sometimes shake. Anyway, Bishop wants Sophia to come to church for his Silver Jubilee, because God has given him a message just for her.
Bishop goes back to Percy’s house (which is apparently adjacent to railroad tracks) and comes across a pretty, younger woman. This is be why Percy wants James out soon. Percy is trying to get his groove on with his lady-for-hire. She offers to stick around for James, but he declines.
James is on a family tour, and his next stop is to see Jacob. Jacob is by himself with Winkie (why is that the child’s nickname??) because Kerissa thought they should have some father-son-grandson time. Jacob also reveals he is not Kerissa’s favorite person these days. James asks if it’s because of the Tasha situation, and Jacob plays dumb, acting like he doesn’t know what his dad is talking about. Game peeps game! It takes a cheater to know a cheater. James reminds Jacob about what he walked in on at Triumph. Jacob says he doesn’t “play that way” anymore. Bishop looks unconvinced but doesn’t press the issue. Then they talk about the divorce, which James does not really want. However, he doesn’t see another option. Jacob suggests he not sign and see what happens after Day with Lady Mae. James thinks about it as he watches Winkie play with a train. The train is like his life, just running with no clear destination.
James hasn’t talked to Lionel since he found out about the affair, and Percy suggests James go see him.James sees Charity at the funeral home and asks why she looked stressed the other day. It’s because Aaron and Kevin told her they were talking about getting married and buying a house. Charity wonders why it can’t be her with the fairytale ending. James tries to put it in perspective for Charity that the happier Kevin is, the better it is for Nathan—the one who really matters. Charity is singing the Bishop’s favorite song at the Jubilee, and he asks if he can join in.
His voice isn’t bad. He’s not one of those preachers who tries to sing and ends up messing up the song. Everyone we would expect to be in the congregation is there, even Sophia. Thank goodness they got rid of that huge billboard of Bishop’s face. Grace gives a speech about her father and his faith. She takes a subliminal shot about him being too trusting (like giving Rochelle all that money). He gets up to the pulpit while everyone cheers and applauds. After his sermon, Sophia is not moved by the spirit. Bishop tells her to come to his office, so he can tell her the meaning of life. The meaning of life isn’t 42 like Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxysaid. Instead, it’s a metaphor about how life is not a runaway train with no direction but onethat is in the capable hands of an engineer who is doing his best to keep everyone safe.
When James gets home, he sees Percy is home by himself because his self-respect won’t let him see his lady friend too often. Percy thinks James is lucky to have a young woman fawning over him, ready to ride him (Percy’s words, not mine). James starts to think about his luck and what Grace said. He sees Rochelle the next day and asks what she’s doing in his life. He wants to know if she told the truth when she said she loved him, an old man with shaky hands. She tells him to take out his phone and look at the app she showed him to view his accounts. She asks if she’s being used because he’s making money, but she has no man and no ring. Then she calls the entire Greenleaf family snakes (that should have raised a red flag with James). Here she goes again with the theatrics, acting hurt and offended. It works again, because he holds her close and tells her he will never again doubt her. Silly man.
James finally goes to see Lionel, who is in an assisted living facility. Lionel apologizes for the infidelity.James likens the situation to Jesus being betrayed by Judas. He claims he forgives Lionel for betraying him (bros before hoes, Lionel!).
Back at Calvary, he is ready to sign the divorce papers. He walks them over to Mae’s office and hands them over in person. She asks why he signed. He says it is because he has no right to the marriage and maybe never did. He puts the ball in her court to sign if she wants out or not sign if she’s willing to give him another shot. She chooses to sign. He’s hurt but fixes his face so as not to show his pain. He gives her a pleading look one last time before he takes the documents. It’s a shame they’ve got to go through this. They can’t even talk. They can’t even kiss. It’s over now.
Sophia’s faith is God is also over. She returns the Bible James gave her. The train metaphor didn’t stop Sophia from hating her life or God.
Will Grace be able to save her father from what Rochelle is planning? Will Sophia regain her faith in God? Comment below with your thoughts!