Are you one that checks the last chapter before beginning the new book, or perhaps are you that type who checks the back page of the paper before turning to the crossword or to see what the Phantom is up to? If so, this is your weekend. Go and read the last two verses of this week’s Gospel:
“There were many other signs…these are recorded so that you may believe…”.
Jesus was different.
“No man spoke as this man did” is recorded elsewhere.
Nonetheless, his life and teaching, even his good works of healing, were subject to controversy and, often, to bitter dispute. Anger often surrounded him. Plots to do away with him confronted him. They even took up stone to kill him…and yet the crowds continued to shield and protect him. Seemingly, not much joy; yet constantly he provided hope and offered peace.
And, so, it is in this last episode.
The team are gathered. Doors, and perhaps minds, closed for fear, certainly of the Jewish authorities but, maybe, also of the unknown. What is going on? Some miss out on this initial greeting of peace. Thomas speaks and perhaps we all have a dose of Thomas in us:
“Unless I see…
Unless I can put my hand…
Individualism was present then as it is rampant today. Maybe the current campaign to remind us that “We are all in this together” has a snippet of the Resurrection message:
“That you may have life through his name”.
Whatever today, the last words are a source of joy and hope for us 2000 years on.
“Happy are those who have not seen and yet believe.”
Disputes, disagreements and conflicts will arise today as then, but the Resurrection brings with it the source of peace for us.
So, let us remember and pray often:
“These words are recorded that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God and that believing this you may have life through his name.”