Poor guy. The apostle who said, "Let us also go [to Jerusalem] with him, that we may die with him.", never gets remembered for that display of chutzpah. The apostle who came around and made that confession of faith, "My Lord and my God", never gets recognized for it. Unless, of course, your music director played the Adoro Te Devote (perhaps as a Communion hymn) at today's Mass. In it, Aquinas wrote those beautiful lines:
Plagas sicut Thomas, non intueor;Deum tamen meum te confiteorFac me tibi semper magis credere,In te spem habere, te diligere.I do not see the wounds, as Thomas did,and yet I, too, own you as "My God."Grant that I believe in you more and more,that I put my hope in you and that I love you.
Of course, today has another lesson within it.
If we satirically label Judas, "The first person to leave Mass early", then Thomas was the first to "arrive for Mass late". Those of you who know people who habitually get to Mass late and then insist on making you get up so they can squeeze into your pew, whisper "Happy Feast Day" to them (it'll make them think). Seriously, today is the day that the Gospel should have a special relevance for them:
- Thomas missed out on seeing Christ in His resurrected glory for the first time with the other Apostles. Yes, he would see Him plenty of times, but never that first time with the other ten. Some opportunities come only one and are gone forever.
- The following week, you can bet Thomas learned from his mistake and made sure he got there on time. In fact, if you read today's Gospel with a certain tone of voice, Jesus' conversation with Thomas could almost have been a chiding of the doubter. In that light, Thomas' response to Jesus could also have been an apology.
On another front, I will be away next week, so there won't be new blog entries. But I'll be back by the weekend, of that there can be no doubt.