Feast of Saint Thomas, Apostle
"You are no longer strangers and sojourners…" the opening lines of St. Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, the proper reading for today’s feast of St. Thomas the Apostle. Yes, I can get in touch with being "stranger and sojourner." When I am up against an evil that I cannot change but can resist, like racism, or solutions addressed with deadly force (abortion, war), I know what it means to be the stranger. When I make every attempt to contribute to the change of another’s life for the good, and do not look for results or acknowledgements, I know what it means to be a sojourner. Thomas gets the rap for being the "doubter," and that is a good thing..someone with whom we can identify. A spiritual blog I read says, "Out of chaos often comes the greatest creativity. We know this is the very nature of the universe. And the only thing that can endure deep doubt or anxiety is deep faith. ..those who can tolerate ambiguity and hold darkness are those who rise to great faith. Faith gets purified every time you go through the cycle of doubt and failure." So what does Jesus want Thomas to do, in order to believe from within, in the face of certain doubt? "Put your finger here…" Who knows where the Spirit wants to lead us during our mission journey on this planet. The Spirit led Thomas to India. Who knows where taking our doubts to Jesus will lead us. Don’t be afraid of touching the wounds through which He invites us into His mission of global reconciliation. It is all part of our Passionist charism.
Fr. Alex Steinmiller, C.P. is president of Holy Family Cristo Rey High School, Birmingham, Alabama.