For centuries people dreamt of flying. Then we did it. In 1903, the first plane left the ground. What a breakthrough! Less than seventy years later we landed on the moon! Who can believe what men and women can do? It is astonishing.


Easter is moving from ignorance to enlightenment. From one way of being to another. We tend to make Thomas a scapegoat for our unbelief. ‘Doubting Thomas’. But does he deserve the description any more than we do? Everyone who appears in the resurrection narratives in the gospels ‘couldn’t believe it’ at first. They were all doubters. Then they moved to a new state of knowledge which allowed frightened Peter to stand up and address ‘the whole House of Israel.’ It was a breakthrough for him, for them and for us.

The gospels are replete with stories of breakthrough. The woman at the well was a frightened broken woman, the target of derision in her community. Then she listened to everything Jesus said to her and slowly she was lifted out of herself. She dropped, not just her water jar, but her whole earlier way of life. It was a breakthrough.

It is hard for us, Easter after Easter, to grasp the newness of the Easter event. We get used to it. Yet occasionally you see a spark that lights up the scene. This week. I watched a video interview on you tube with Amai Takura, composer of many of our bast known Shona liturgical music. I learnt a lot about what she has actually done but I was even more touched by how she did it. Her faith bristled with life. Every sentence was an acknowledgement that her work was a gift. Her part was to receive and do the hard work of crafting the gift into a composition that resonated with people. Faith has broken through into her life big time.

Early on in John’s gospel we have the awful words: ‘though the light has come into the world, people have preferred darkness’ (3:19). Easter is the proclamation of opportunity, of choice. Every generation intuits this. Thomas could have persisted in his stubbornness, his darkness – ‘unless I see …’ – but he didn’t. He grasped the gift that was offered.  That is the joy of Easter; to lay hold of the gift that is ours, to allow it to percolate into our being, to witness to the breakthrough in which we share.

‘Oh! That you would break through the heavens and come down!’ (Is 63:19) That is exactly what he did.

16 April 2023        Easter 2A     Acts 2:42-47          1 Pet 1:3-9       Jn 20:19-31  

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