Headshot of Sister Donna Del Santo for upcoming El Mensajero Catolico column. Headshot of Sister Donna Del Santo for upcoming El Mensajero Catolico column.

Remember who we are called to be as Jesus’ disciples

Recently I had jury duty. The accused was charged with a felony that took place six years ago. As potential jurors, we were asked whether we would need physical evidence to prove the guilt or innocence of the accused and told that the only evidence that would be presented would be the testimony of the victim. I thought for a moment and then raised my hand, "Yes, I would need some physical evidence to prove guilt or innocence." Needless to say, I wasn’t chosen to be a juror.

As I read the Scriptures for the Easter season I realized how much I am like the apostle Thomas. I wonder if I were one of Jesus’ disciples and happened to be out with Thomas when Jesus appeared to them in that Upper Room, would I have believed their report of Jesus’ appearance or would I have been like Thomas? Would I have needed to "see the mark of the nails in his hands and put my finger into the nail marks and put my hand into his side" in order to believe? How about you? What proof would you need to believe in Christ’s appearance?

Can you imagine the scene the following week when Jesus appears again to the disciples and this time Thomas is with them? Can you hear Jesus say to Thomas: "Put your finger here and see my hands, and bring your hand and put it into my side, and do not be unbelieving, but believe"? What a humbling moment for Thomas; a moment to turn Thomas’ doubt to belief.

It’s in this moment that Thomas leaves us the Thomas Test; which gives witness to our choice to be Easter people by making Christ’s presence known through our presence, and our faith through actions in the world.

If Thomas were to come to you today and asked to see your hands and side, what would he see?

* Would he see the wounds of Christ you bore because you spoke out on behalf of the poor, and marginalized through Roc/ACTS?

* Would he see the scars of Christ’s feet, on your feet, because you walked the extra mile with a friend struggling with an addiction, or the loss of their job, or the death of a loved one?

* Would he see your pierced side because you opened your heart to the voice of God and forgave someone for a painful wrong they did to you?

As Easter people, the words of St. Teresa of Avila poetically and powerfully challenge us to remember who we are called to be as disciples of Jesus the Christ and that:

"Christ has no body now but yours; No hands, no feet on earth but yours.

"Yours are the eyes, through which He looks, compassion on this world.

"Yours are the feet with which He walks to do good.

"Yours are the hands with which He blesses all the world.

"Yours are the hands, yours are the feet, yours are the eyes, you are His body.

"Christ has no body now but yours; No hands, no feet on earth but yours.

"Yours are the eyes through which He looks, compassion on this world.

"Christ has no body now on earth but yours."

Sister Del Santo is director of vocations for the Sisters of St. Joseph of Rochester.

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