03 July 2019. Feast of Saint Thomas, Apostle
Reflection (Sem. Keith R. Buenaventura)
In the Gospel for today, we see the encounter between Jesus and His doubting disciple, Saint Thomas. Why did he doubt? We can only speculate. However, the Gospel shows us that in the midst of doubt, Jesus still understands our weaknesses, our woundedness. He shares with us in our woundedness because even when He is resurrected, His wounds are still present. This is to remind us that in weakness, we can grow and improve and win over sins.
To encounter God it is necessary to go beyond the confines of reason. The highest part of the person is reason. It is not excluded from the search of God. Reason is a tool in searching for God, though it is limited. We cannot grasp everything and our reason has weaknesses. God is incomprehensible in a sense that we cannot know everything about Him. But we can experience Him in our life. A philosopher once said, “The heart has reason which reason cannot comprehend.” Indeed, a man with a heart greater than his mind can understand more in order to love more.
One of the activities in the seminary is the monthly recollection. We reflect on the many graces God has bestowed on us, but more important than reflection is prayer because in prayer we encounter God. While holding a Eucharistic vigil in the Chapel the whole weekend, I am grateful that I can look at Jesus who leads me to look for Him inside myself?to see inwardly in me Jesus fully alive. When I look at my woundedness and fractures in life, I am able to see them as wounds of Jesus for me. I have to embrace those wounds and fractures in my life. Then my reason would stop and give way for my heart to savor that emptiness and surrender it to God.
The Gospel Today
John 20: 24 – 29
Thomas, called Didymus, one of the Twelve,
was not with them when Jesus came.
So the other disciples said to him, “We have seen the Lord.”
But Thomas said to them,
“Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands
and put my finger into the nailmarks
and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”
Now a week later his disciples were again inside
and Thomas was with them.
Jesus came, although the doors were locked,
and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.”
Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands,
and bring your hand and put it into my side,
and do not be unbelieving, but believe.”
Thomas answered and said to him, “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus said to him, “Have you come to believe because you have seen me?
Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.”