There is a growing number of people in Ireland who reject anything that is not backed up with material evidence. Science reigns supreme. St Thomas seems to have the same need in that he demanded to touch the wounds of Jesus before he would believe that Jesus had risen. Neither he nor his fellow disciples seem to have heard Jesus’ promise that on the third day he would arise from the dead. Perhaps they could not accept what he said because they saw that he was as human as they were.
In that society, women’s testimony was not considered valid, so in spite of the fact that in all four gospels it was the women who first were told of the Resurrection, they were not believed. God, however, chose them as the first witnesses. The disciples thought their report was an “idle tale” (Luke 24:11). It was only when Jesus appeared to them and convinced them that his body was real that they accepted that he had indeed risen from the dead as he said he would.
Thomas’ cry of faith, “My Lord and my God”, is a wonderful gift. At the time it was written it was a clear response to those who said that Jesus only had the appearance of a body (docetism). It is a profound statement of who Christ is, and an invitation to enter the spiritual world where mystery can be accepted and God is found in all things.