St Thomas the Apostle ?
Posted 22 December 2011 - 04:09 AM
I'm curious about literature describing this saint. I know that the gospel with his name attached to it is considered to be gnostic and therefore of no interest to me.
I would like to know what good, orthodox literature has to say about St Thomas, his life, and teaching.
I am told that the Orthodox actually refer to him as St Thomas the Believer. I know that he went to India, and served there.
Is there anything about his teachings or how he had to grapple with a need to know as opposed to the simple faith of the rest? This is my area of interest. How did he and everyone else come to grips with his desire for "proof?"
Posted 22 December 2011 - 04:33 AM
Here's a link to the hymnography for the first Sunday after Easter, known as Thomas' Sunday, and for the feast of the Apostle, celebrated on October 6. There is much food for thought there:
Posted 22 December 2011 - 08:10 AM
Some icons depicting this event are inscribed "The Doubting Thomas." This is incorrect. In Greek, the inscription reads, "The Touching of Thomas." In Slavonic, it says, "The Belief of Thomas." When St Thomas touched the Life-giving side of the Lord, he no longer had any doubts. "
Full article here:
From the Akathist Hymn which I cannot find in its entirety, but would definitely contain considerable information about St. Thomas, if nowhere else could be found:
""Troparion (Tone 2)
You were a disciple of Christ
And a member of the divine college of Apostles. Having been weak in faith you doubted the Resurrection of Christ. But by feeling the wounds you believed in His all-pure passion: Pray now to Him, O all-praised Thomas to grant us peace and great mercy.
Kontakion (Tone 4)
Thomas, the faithful servant and disciple of Christ, Filled with divine grace, cried out from the depth of his love: You are my Lord and my God!"
Posted 22 December 2011 - 08:31 PM
Forgive me, I did not see Olga's post initially. She posted the entire Akathist.
That is because Tom posted two very similar threads - I replied to one of them, and you replied to the other. The threads have now been merged.
I posted links to the services of Vespers and Matins, Ioan, not the akathist. But an akathist to the apostle would agree with what the other services say.
Posted 22 December 2011 - 09:49 PM
Edited by Herman Blaydoe, 22 December 2011 - 11:01 PM.
Posted 23 December 2011 - 06:25 AM
I tend to think that perhaps St. Thomas who was no doubt very despondent after Christ's crucifixion, upon hearing that He had risen, simply dared not give in to a possibly false hope. I can certainly imagine, when he heard the news, that rather than risking being crushed twice, once with seeing the death of his Lord, and then again finding "rumors" of Christ risen false. He dared not hope to find such joy, and simply said "unless I see Him myself, and verify that it is indeed Him, I dare not get my hopes up." But that might just be me.
Thomas was (over) prudent and a bit cowardly, but The Church attributes this to his weakness in Faith -- that is Thomas was more of a beginner in Faith than the others, and thus was making the mistakes that many beginners naturally make. What The Church also teaches is that after Thomas saw Christ's wounds he became more zealous and brave than all the others were at that time, leaving them behind only for them to 'catch up' with Thomas at a later time. So, Thomas behaved like many believers do -- at first they are very doubtful, but as Christ strengthens them, they become Saints. The other apostles did not struggle so bad with lack of faith in the beginning, but neither did they have that powerful change of heart that Thomas did -- their process was a slower one, again, typical of many a believer. It is important to point out the weaknesses which are due to the illnesses of our souls, as well as the virtues that emerge, so that we can diagnose the illness properly and find the right cure.
Posted 23 December 2011 - 07:47 AM
Historically, Eusebius of Caesaria relates how Pantaneus in 190 a.d.(head of the catechetical alexandrian school) went to India on a missionary journey where he found indian christians using a hebrew version of the gospel of St Matthew who converted them by a Mar Tholmai. It seems this name translates as bartholomew but some believe it was a misundertanding and Pantaneus probably heard the name Mar Thoma (thomas). Thomas most likely preached in the northern area ruled by a king with the title Gondophares IV Sases. When the roman seige of Jerusalem began in 66a.d. many (Cochin) jews migrated to the malabar coast. St Thomas probably then went to the south to preach to this jewish diaspora, where he made converts and was eventually martyred in Mylapore in 72 a.d. His relics were transfered to Edessa then to Chios and finally to Italy.
Posted 13 October 2016 - 02:59 AM
May I please ask if anyone may recommend literature on St Thomas' mission in India?
A problem I see is that there is the gnostic, apocryphal "Acts of Thomas", and there is a risk that those Acts can be a source of modern retellings of Thomas' story. I instead am interested in literature that tells an orthodox story of his time there.
I can start a new thread if you like.
This looks good:
This detailed a nalysis concludes that substantial evidence supports the claim that Thomas was the first t o establish Christian communities on the continent in the first century CE wit h the purpose of evangelization.
The Apostle of India: Post VII - Travels Amongst the Saint Thomas Christians of India
This is old and not Orthodox:
India and the Apostle Thomas: An Inquiry, with a Critical Analysis, By Adolphus E. Medlycott
0 user(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users