Feast of Saint Thomas, the Apostle

Saturday, July 3, 2021 - 13:00

Today is the Feast Day of Saint Thomas - fellow Apostle to Saint Jude.

Thomas is commonly known as "Doubting Thomas" because he doubted Jesus' resurrection when first told of it (as related in the Gospel of John alone); later, he confessed his faith, "My Lord and my God," on seeing Jesus' crucifixion wounds. However, it is also important to remember that Thomas became the first apostle to call Jesus, God.

Traditionally, Thomas is believed to have travelled outside the Roman Empire to preach the Gospel, travelling as far as Tamilakam which are the states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu in present-day India. According to tradition, Thomas reached Muziris, (modern-day North Paravur and Kodungalloor in the state of Kerala, India) in AD 52 and converted several people, founding what today are known as Saint Thomas Christians or Mar Thoma Nazranis.

After his death, the reputed relics of Saint Thomas the Apostle were enshrined as far as Mesopotamia in the 3rd century, and later moved to various places. Our images show the Saint Thomas carving (above) which is part of an apse of the Twelve Apostles created by Anthony Foster. The design was based on the Malmesbury Apostles. Saint Paul has been substituted for Judas Iscariot.

Our second image (below) shows one of two panels in aggrafito work by Adam Kossowski, bearing the names of the Apostle. The lettering and ornamentation are in red and black, and the effect is obtained by laying a foundation of red and black plaster, then covering it with an off-white plaster, and while the latter is still moist cutting away the lettering with a stylus to reveal the colours beneath.

Saint Thomas, pray for us! Saint Jude, pray for us

Read more about the Shrine of Saint Jude, here; puchase a prayer card for Saint Thomas, here.