Tuesday, April 10, 2012

“Hey Thomas, guess who showed up while you were gone?”

Our Gospel reading for this week is  John 20:19-31

Isn’t interesting how quickly we are willing to make Thomas the “poster child” for faithless doubt? Yet, the so-called “faithful” disciples, stay locked up in the upper room after the appearance of Jesus. Who are the real doubters? Where did Thomas go while the others were in hiding?  What prompted him to return to his community? It was to the community that Jesus came to him, and without so much as a confession or absolution, offered him what he needed to believe: “Touch, me Thomas. Do not be faithless, but believing.”  

Perhaps one of Thomas’ great virtues is that he refused to say that he understood what he did not understand, or that he believed what he did not believe. There was an honesty about him. Thomas would never satisfy his doubts by pretending that they did not exist. Like us, Thomas had doubts, but he refused to surrender to the fear which kept the disciples shut up in that locked room. He both ventured out and had the courage to return: to face a community which had had an experience he did not share and be willing to insist on his own experience of God...my Lord and my God.


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