Thank you for joining the St. Monica’s Live Stream Mass for Friday 7/3/2020, Feast of Saint Thomas, Apostle

Going Deeper – Gospel Reflections

Readings for Friday 7/3/2020

Reading 1 EPH 2:19-22

Brothers and sisters:
You are no longer strangers and sojourners,
but you are fellow citizens with the holy ones
and members of the household of God,
built upon the foundation of the Apostles and prophets,
with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone.
Through him the whole structure is held together
and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord;
in him you also are being built together
into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

Responsorial Psalm 117:1BC, 2

R.  (Mark 16:15)  Go out to all the world and tell the Good News.
Praise the LORD, all you nations;
glorify him, all you peoples!
R.    Go out to all the world and tell the Good News.
For steadfast is his kindness for us,
and the fidelity of the LORD endures forever.
R.    Go out to all the world and tell the Good News.

Alleluia JN 20:29

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
You believe in me, Thomas, because you have seen me, says the Lord;
blessed are those who have not seen, but still believe!
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel JN 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.”

“My Lord and My God!”

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.” John 20:24-25

It’s easy to be critical of St. Thomas for his lack of belief reflected in his statement above.  But before you allow yourself to think poorly of him, think about how you would have responded.  This is a difficult exercise to do since we know clearly the end of the story.  We know Jesus did rise from the dead and that Thomas ultimately came to believe, crying out “My Lord and my God!”  But try to put yourself in his situation.

First, Thomas probably doubted, in part, out of extreme sadness and despair.  He had hoped that Jesus was the Messiah, he had dedicated the last three years of his life to following Him, and now Jesus was dead…so he thought.  This is an important point because very often in life when we encounter some difficulty, disappointment or painful situation, our faith is tested.  We are tempted to allow despair to draw us into doubt and when this happens we make decisions based more upon our hurt than upon our faith.

Second, Thomas was also called to deny the physical reality that he witnessed with his own eyes and believe something that was completely “impossible” from an earthly perspective.  People simply do not rise from the dead!  This simply doesn’t happen, at least from an earthly perspective alone.  And even though Thomas had seen Jesus perform such miracles before, it took much faith to believe without seeing with his own eyes.  So despair and an apparent impossibility went to the heart of Thomas’ faith and extinguished it.

Reflect, today, upon two lessons we can take from this passage: 1) Do not ever allow despair, disappointment or hurt to be the guide of your decisions or beliefs in life.  They are never a good guide.  2)  Do not doubt the power of God to be able to do anything and everything He chooses.  In this case, God chose to rise from the dead and so He did.  In our own lives, God can do anything He wills.  We must believe that and know that what He reveals to us in faith will come to be if we but trust in His provident care.

Lord, I do believe.  Help my unbelief.  When I am tempted to give in to despair or to doubt Your almighty power over all things in life, help me to turn to You and to trust in You with all my heart.  May I cry out, with St. Thomas, “My Lord and my God,” and may I do so even when I see only with the faith You put into my soul.  Jesus, I trust in You.

Source of content: mycatholic.life

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Fr. Tom Wyrsch
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Office: 314-434-4211 x336


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