From the Vicar…
My dearest sisters and brothers,
Do not doubt but believe.
Thomas, of all the disciples, shows the most human qualities.
He is impulsive, he is forthright. He doubts.
He is called the twin, or didymus.
Didymus can mean twin, or double-tongued. It can mean being in two minds.
It is the idea of there being another side to what is.
The two sides we are dealing with here are faith and doubt.
So, the disciples come and tell Thomas in all their joy, “We have seen the Lord!”
Thomas is sceptical. He doubts. Unless he can see or feel, he will not believe.
A week later Thomas gets his chance. Jesus appears, and says:
“Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side.
Do not doubt but believe.”
Thomas is obviously overwhelmed. He doesn’t need to touch Jesus.
He only needs to see him, and he says: “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus has managed to bring Thomas from doubt to faith.
From a fading belief to the full profession of the Christian:
belief in the divinity of Jesus.
The thing here is that Jesus wants Thomas to believe.
He wants Thomas to be with him where he is.
This is the same for us, for everyone. Jesus wants us to be with him.
He knows that we are all different.
He knows that we all here today are at different stages of our journey.
He meets everyone where they are.
He meets those who don’t know him, and patiently waits.
We have all been like Thomas at some point.
Moments when we have doubted parts of the faith,
or even doubted the whole thing.
Dark times when it seems there is no point, and God has forsaken us.
Doubt is a part of life. Doubt is a part of faith.
It is impossible to have faith without doubt.
They are two sides of the same thing. Without doubt there cannot be faith.
To have doubts means we have accepted that faith is not static but is a journey.
Thomas was despairing because the one whom he was following had been put to death.
In that darkness he was doubting all he had been through.
But from that doubt, he found faith.
From within his doubt, Jesus pulled out faith.
Within our doubt, we find faith.
Jesus says to Thomas, and to us, “Do not doubt, but believe.”
Jesus is prepared to meet us where we are, and that can be, and often is,
in a place of doubt.
Within despair, there is hope.
Within doubt, faith will arise.
Peace be with you all.
- Parish AGM: today in the parish hall. The meeting will begin immediately after morning tea and is scheduled to finish by 1:00 pm. Nomination forms for People’s Warden and for Vestry members are available at the back of the church (nominations must be submitted before the meeting). Copies of reports will be available in the hall.
- Receipts for last year’s giving may be collected today.
- S. Michael’s School resumes for Term Two tomorrow.
- Meditation Group meets in the Lady Chapel Wednesdays at 12 noon.
Details Margaret Maclagan (359 9215) or Pat Evans (358 0127).
- Angelology Group meets Thursdays, 10:30 am in the Lady Chapel.
- Bible Study Group resumes on 13 May. Details Peter Oakley (960 0974).
- Easter Flowers: thank you to the floral arrangers and to those who made financial contributions towards the beautiful flowers. Donations always welcome.
- Book Swap in the parish lounge. Koha to the parish.
- Inasmuch basket: please continue to support the City Mission with your gifts of groceries and other household items.