I am one who thinks that Thomas gets a bad rap. As we look at various Gospel accounts, we find that he only asked to get the same treatment as the other disciples. They were invited to touch Jesus and his wounds. Thomas wanted the same thing. However, in John's treatment of the story, he is a doubter (making it sound like doubt is a bad thing). In fact, he was simply late to the party and missed out.
In the Catholic tradition, we celebrate various feast days, mainly for the saints, but sometimes for events. Thus, we have a celebration of the Conversion of Paul and the Confession of Peter. Somehow, we never get to commemorating the Denial of Peter, or Paul's persecution of the Church, but we do continue to talk about Doubting Thomas.
John tells the story "Do not be doubting, but believing", making it sound as if Doubt and Faith (Belief) are opposites. I would suggest that Certainty is the opposite of Faith. We are encouraged to keep believing in the midst of our questions and doubts, and that trust sustains us.
Perhaps we ought to start thinking of the Confession of Thomas, since he declared "My Lord and My God", when Jesus recognized his doubts and invited Thomas to touch his wounds. John does not tell us that Thomas actually touched the wounds, but most artwork suggests that he did. I suspect that the simple encounter was enough to prompt the Confession of Thomas.
I would hope that we can all make that Confession our own. We are indeed blessed in that same passage, when Jesus remarks that those who believe without seeing are indeed blessed.
The Rev'd Br. Paul Colbert, CoS has served as Priest-in-Charge of Holy Trinity, Madera since 2009. He is a monk in the Community of Solitude, a dispersed ecumenical community the spirit of St Benedict and St Romuald.