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Thief Redeemed by Love

The movie Les Misérables, based on the novel by Victor Hugo, opens with a vagabond curled up on a stone bench on a desolate French street corner. His bedraggled appearance makes him seem dangerous and causes the townspeople, from whom he sought food and shelter, to snub him. Finally he slumps over in dejection—until a passerby points to a place where he can find refuge.

He goes to the door and knocks. The homeowner, the town's bishop, is startled by the late-night visitation but attentively listens to his story. His name is Jean Valjean, and he reveals that he is a recently released convict and marked by the authorities as dangerous. Even so, ...

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