Weekend Reflections for 4/6/18
The Risen Jesus comes to console his apostles, his friends, on the evening of Easter Sunday. They are scared to death that the authorities will come and arrest them and crucify them as they did Jesus and so they have locked themselves in the room of the last supper. He doesn’t challenge or accuse them, doesn’t ask where they were on Friday as he hung on the cross. He simply greets them, “Peace be with you.” His love and compassion for them was overwhelming and they were filled with joy. They knew it was Jesus.
For some reason Thomas wasn’t there when Jesus appeared. When the other apostles told him that Jesus was truly alive, he doubts and puts conditions on his faith: “Unless I see the marks of the nails in his hands and put my finger into the nailmarks and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” His doubt earned him a personal appearance; Jesus came back a week later just for Thomas. He extended his hands and said Here, go ahead and fulfill your conditions. The Gospel doesn’t tell us whether Thomas put his finger in the wounds but I don’t think he needed that. Jesus was treating Thomas the way he always had, putting himself at Thomas’ disposal, as he had when he washed his feet. No one else treated him this way. It had to be Jesus and he acknowledges, “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus is speaking to his apostles and to us when he says, “Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.” Jesus treats us as he did his friends. He can challenge us but he never accuses or shames. He comes when we ask and invite him and always looks on us with infinite compassion and love. Peace be with you.
Fr. Ralph Huse, S.J.