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Posts Tagged ‘Doubting Thomas’

[The Sunday following Easter Sunday is the day Catholics are reminded of the story of “Doubting Thomas“:
19 In the evening of that same day [Easter], the first day of the week, the doors were closed in the room where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews.  Jesus came and stood among them.  He said to them, ‘Peace be with you,’
20 and, after saying this, he showed them his hands and his side.  The disciples were filled with joy at seeing the Lord,
21 and he said to them again, ‘Peace be with you.  ‘As the Father sent me, so am I sending you.
22 After saying this he breathed on them and said: ‘Receive the Holy Spirit.
23 If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven; if you retain anyone’s sins, they are retained.
24 Thomas, called the Twin, who was one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came.
25 So the other disciples said to him, ‘We have seen the Lord,’ but he answered, ‘Unless I can see the holes that the nails made in his hands and can put my finger into the holes they made, and unless I can put my hand into his side, I refuse to believe.’
26 Eight days later the disciples were in the house again and Thomas was with them.  The doors were closed, but Jesus came in and stood among them.  ‘Peace be with you,’ he said.
27 Then he spoke to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; look, here are my hands.  Give me your hand; put it into my side.  Do not be unbelieving any more but believe.
28 Thomas replied, ‘My Lord and my God!’
29 Jesus said to him: ‘You believe because you can see me.  Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.
30 There were many other signs that Jesus worked in the sight of the disciples, but they are not recorded in this book.
31 These are recorded so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing this you may have life through his name.
[In my lifetime, I have been a believer, an agnostic, an atheist, and an on-again / off-again believer / agnostic.  I am currently a believer (with doubts).  My doubts are not about God.  My doubts are about the Church and religion I CHOOSE to follow.  As a practicing Catholic, I simply cannot tolerate the child abuse scandals which have come to light in the past few decades.  I recognize the Church is made up of individuals and sometimes they can be spiritually weak and fail in their personal duties and responsibilities.  But I cannot accept the institutional toleration of crimes against children (or the elderly).  I believe the arc of history bends towards justice.  I believe the touch of the Holy Spirit guides the Church on its own arc towards justice.  I believe in a just AND a loving God.  I do not fear God’s wrath against the Church of my faith as much as I dread God’s indifference in a time of need.  I am still waiting for this generation of Church leaders to ACT.  Justice will come.  The question which remains to be answered is whether today’s leaders place greater value on the followers or on the institution?  By your acts we shall know you.  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2019 Before & After
Quiet, Please!
2018 Heavy On The Starch
2017 But The Beginning Of What?
2016 Today’s Rule
2015 Remembering Oklahoma City
2014 Who Was That Masked Man?
2013 Enemy Mine
2012 Strengthen Me
2011 Service, Please
2010 The Church In Crisis…

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Risen” – movie review
Risen” (2016) is the story of the Christian tale of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, but it is told from the perspective of a Roman military tribune Clavius (played by Joseph Fiennes).  He is tasked to investigate the mystery of what happened to the body of Jesus (played by Cliff Curtis) following the Crucifixion.  Accompanied by a rookie (but for some reason, trusted) aide Lucius (Tom Felton – Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter series), Clavius must find the body before the Emperor arrives on a visit.
The movie generally follows the four gospels, but has some interesting twists because it’s from the Roman side.  There are (to my mind) changes, but they won’t mean a great deal to the average person – Christian or not.  One of the most interesting (to me) was the twisting of the story of “Doubting Thomas”.  The actions happen per the gospel, but the line about faith is directed to Clavius instead of to Thomas.
Another (to me) significant change is Mary Magdalene (played by Maria Botto) is put back in the role of a prostitute.  This is a currently discredited interpretation of Mary Magdalene’s role among the followers of Christ.  The role came about by means of a claim / assertion by Pope Gregory I, which generally combined multiple Mary’s cited in the testaments into a single Mary.
Other than these (and other minor) errors, I found the movie to be an excellent story of faith and conversion.  On the basis of this alone, I give the movie a strong recommendation.
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On This Day In:
2016 Dignity And Grace
2015 Is It Warm Enough For You
2014 What The Right STILL Wants
2013 Embrace Serendipity
2012 Your Order, Please
2011 Well Enough Anyway

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Today’s posts are four songs which are really stories and the Gospel from today’s mass.  First, the Gospel…
Today is the first Sunday after Easter.  That means it’s Doubting Thomas Sunday.  To most of the world that expression will mean nothing, but to those Christians and Catholics who’ve ever had a crisis of faith and then returned, this is, I believe, the most important Sunday of the year…
John Chapter 20: verses:19-31
19 On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”  20 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. 21 Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you.  As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” 22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.  23  If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you withhold forgiveness from any, it is withheld.
24 Now Thomas, one of the Twelve, called the Twin, [3] was not with them when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails, and place my finger into the mark of the nails, and place my hand into his side, I will never believe.”
26 Eight days later, his disciples were inside again, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side.  Do not disbelieve, but believe.” 28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me?  Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.
 
30 Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
What is the meaning of faith?  I believe we must each be tested at some point in our lives to make our own personal determination about faith.  For some, there will be no belief without proof (whatever form that takes).  For others, faith itself justifies belief.  I am a modern, practicing Roman Catholic.  I believe in the God of the New Testament.  A God of LOVE, not retribution.  I was raised (more or less) as a scientist with a Libertarian / Enlightenment point of view.  As such, my logical mind questions everything in the Bible.  I’ve always had a hard time with fairy tales and miracles.  But I’ve never had a problem with love or its power.  I have faith in my God because I have no proof and as a scientist I do not believe there is or can be any proof.  And yet, my faith is sufficient.
Four Stories / Song Lyrics
Today, I’m also including the lyrics to four songs.  Of course, they are song lyrics to country songs which means they tell a story.  The first three are sung by Tim McGraw.  The first is about a man telling another man the thing which pushed him to live the way he always should have.  It’s titled: “Live Like You Were Dyin’“.  The second is a story about a man who is celebrating a birthday and thinking about what he needs to do in the future.  It’s titled: “My Next Thirty Years“.  The third McGraw song is about sometimes just being stupid and onery – which most of us can be sometimes, and which most of us hope to grow out of someday (yes, I’m still waiting).  It’s titled: “Cowboy In Me“.  The fourth song is probably THE song which brought me back to Country music.  It’s titled: “Silence On The Line“, and performed by Chris LeDoux.  In a world of “urban cowboys” (like me, I’m afraid), Chris was the real deal – a champion rodeo cowboy, a rancher, a husband and father, and a singer/songwriter.  My first recollection of hearing it was in the ’90’s while I was in Liverpool.  I was watching CMT on TV and saw the video.  It blew me away! Next came Garth Brooks and a host of others to follow, but it started with Chris.  Unfortunately, Chris passed away in 2005 from cancer at the age of 56.  When I first heard about his passing, I was looking to see if I could find one of his gigs on the West Coast so I could hear him live.  I never got the chance…
As usual, enjoy reading the stories and then go hear them on the web or buy them wherever you get your music.  Life is too short to miss great stories / songs / music.
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