July 3, 2017
Feast of Saint Thomas, Apostle
The Gospel Today
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.”
REFLECTION (Sem. Mark Ian V. Abu)
“Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believed.” These were the words of Jesus when he appeared again to the apostles coming to them through the locked doors. He immediately approached Thomas who was not present the first time he appeared to them. Jesus did not condemned or dismissed Thomas for his doubt but went deeper to the matter, giving the apostle a personal opportunity to touch and see His wounds. Jesus, then, instructed Thomas to stop doubting. The response of Thomas was very short yet full of revelation and faith: ‘My Lord and my God’. A very concise answer which is full of love and faith.
Doubts are part of being human. Thomas’ doubt can be considered as one of the most honest statements in the Bible. Maybe because of the pain and disappointment that he felt after the suffering and death of Jesus on the cross. He cannot contain in himself what he was thinking and feeling and he has to verbalize his doubts as honestly as possible. When Thomas told the other apostles that he will not believe them unless he put his fingers and hands into the wounds of Jesus, he put more importance on his senses rather than his deep conviction in order to believe. The reading does not only captures the expression of Thomas’ doubt, but also the truth that doubt leads to believing. Though he doubted, Thomas was still chose by Jesus to share with Him in His suffering through the shedding of his blood as a martyr.
What are your doubts this moment? Like Thomas may we have the guts to express whatever doubt we may have in our life to Jesus. God is big enough and very generous to handle our doubts, and it is by facing them and bringing them to Jesus that we will be able to trust even when we don’t understand. Let us offer our many disbeliefs to God and ask for the intercession of St. Thomas that we may also proclaim our own profession of faith.