Sunday, April 11, 2010

Low Sunday

Well, today is also called "Thomas Sunday" and I came across an essay that makes the case that Thomas has long received a "bad rap" - something I've believed for some time now:
Where was Thomas when Jesus first appeared? John doesn't tell us. My own guess was that he was out and about getting on with his life. Why do I think that? Because Thomas was a realist. Let's not forget: in chapter 11, it's Thomas who recognizes that for Jesus to return to Judea is to face the threat of death, and it's Thomas who urges the other disciples to go with Jesus. So while we don't know where Thomas was when Jesus first appeared, we do know where he wasn't – locked in the upper room for fear of the religious authorities.
And that, of course, was where the other disciples were.

The piece is entitled "It's Not About Thomas" by Lutheran pastor David J. Lose. You might like to click through and read it because it's not very long.
UPDATE: Here's something I just learned on the page linked to through the words "Thomas Sunday" above:
It is the custom in some Orthodox parishes to travel to the cemetery on this day to pray, light candles, and to sing "Christ is Risen!" to deceased family members. If your parish does this, make sure to take your children even if you don't have any family members buried there. They need to learn that we Orthodox pray for the dead. If your parish does not so this, you and your family can go on your own, say a prayer for the dead listed in most prayer books, and sing "Christ is Risen!" Be sure to take and light candles at each grave you visit.
What a wonderful tradition! It's too late in the evening for me to do this now but I hope I remember next year. I think it would be very meaningful even though I don't have any family members buried here in Oklahoma. In Christ, we are all family!

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