We are all in the brush of Caravaggio who painted the finger of Thomas in the side of the Risen Christ

Homiletics of the Fathers of The Island of Patmos

- homiletics -

WE ARE ALL IN THE CARAVAGGIO BRUSH THAT PAINTED TOMMASO'S FINGER IN THE COSTATE OF THE RISEN CHRIST

Maybe you can read it in Tommaso's attitude a powder’ of pride and mistrust towards the apostolic community. Then Jesus breaks into the closed doors of his heart and mind. Bring irrefutable proof: those wounds are true and full of love.

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Author:
Gabriele Giordano M. Scardocci, o.p.

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Dear brothers and sisters,

Caravaggio, particular: St Thomas unbelieving

today we celebrate the Sunday of mercy, of God's love for man. We can speak of love and mercy in these times of the coronavirus? This is how a dear nurse friend in the red zone from Lombardy replies:

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«Mercy is going out to your comfort zone […] and say yes to God and neighbor. With simple gestures like putting cream on a person, shake a hand or communicate with a glance all the tenderness that I felt inside me, come not only from God but also from all those brothers who are close to me with prayer, with thought, with the messages and every form of good that I tried to remodel so that it could be useful as a love to give ».

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Today we can meditate then together on the mercy and experience of Thomas the Apostle, in tenderness, in truth and joy. We read about it in the Acts of the Apostles:

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“All the believers were together and had everything in common; every day they persevered together in the temple and, breaking bread in the houses, they took food with joy and simplicity of heart, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people " [At 2, 42-47].

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The word that expresses that whole and ομοθυμαδόν (my mood), term that indicates a profound communion in the first Christian communities. All in fact, Luke the Evangelist writes us, he is cloaked in a communion in faith, in charity and material goods. Therefore communion testifies to the true face of God has the effect of joy and simplicity of heart. True communion in charity and faith shows the love of God and people are converted and decide to become Christians..

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This is the effort that even today the Christian is called to do: be a believer who lives in relationship Communion, because there is no mercy in self-sufficient solitude. Selfishness is contrary to mercy and is the root of division; mercy is openness to God and to the other, in an act of self-giving to excess.

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In this sense, the example of Thomas apostle shows us how we open ourselves to God and to the community. His example is perhaps familiar to us.

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Today's Gospel it is divided into two scenes: the first describes the apostles locked inside for fear of the Jews, the arrival of Jesus [GV 19, 23], where there is the sending of the apostles, the foundation of the confession of sins through the Spirit. In the second scene [GV 24, 31], the Apostles are closed inside again, and this time there is also Thomas, who had not believed in the community:

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"If I don't see the sign of the nails in his hands and I don't put my finger in the sign of the nails and I don't put my hand in his side, I do not think so".

Thomas is the person in search of God: he wants to believe only after he has seen and known (as in fact we find the original Greek ίδιο (idiot) deriving from Οἶδα (oida) that indicates “i have seen” therefore “so”, expression that we find in Sophocles' work Antigone.

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Maybe, can be read in Tommaso's attitude a powder’ of pride and mistrust towards the apostolic community. Then Jesus breaks into the closed doors of his heart and mind. Bring irrefutable proof: those wounds are true and full of love. With Santa Caterina we can try to read Tommaso's thoughts «and there, in the wound of the side, you will discover the secret of his heart: he loved you and loves you invaluably ". Finally the apostle can burst out "Lord my God!». Truth and Mercy meet. Finally, the apostle can also embark on a self-giving mission, by preaching the mystery of God.

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In Jesus Christ all of us like Thomas, we discover the truth of a tenderness of those who never stop loving us in the face of our frailties. This gives us the joy of new life, Sunday without sunset, that we all begin to live now and we will live in Heaven with Him.

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Rabindranath Tagore wrote: "I dreamed, and I saw that life is joy; I woke up, and I saw that life is service. servii, and I saw that in serving there is joy ".

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We ask God to open our hearts to mercy so that our service to the truth will lead everyone to the joy of the encounter.

So be it

Rome, 19 April 2020

 

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Staff Blog

Father Gabriele

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Visit the pages of our book shop WHO and support our editions buying and spreading our books, printing and distribution of which will resume after 4 May due to the current coronavirus emergency, for which our distribution company has momentarily suspended until this date both printing and distribution.

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News from the Dominican Province Roman: visit the official website of the Dominicans, WHO

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About Father Gabriele

Gabriele Giordano M. Scardocci Dell'Ordine dei Frati Predicatori Presbitero e Teologo ( Click on the name to read all its articles )

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