Today would be an Ember Day, but instead, as forewarned, it’s a major feast day – we’re celebrating Saint Thomas the Apostle! The Collect for this day is:
Everliving God, who strengthened your apostle Thomas with firm and certain faith in your Son’s resurrection: Grant us so perfectly and without doubt to believe in Jesus Christ, our Lord and our God, that our faith may never be found wanting in your sight; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
Obviously this primarily references St. Thomas’ famed moment of doubt when, like the other Apostles, he refused to believe the resurrection of Christ until he saw with his own eyes. Jesus’ words at the end of the encounter, “blessed are those who have not seen yet have believed” are implied in the words of this Collect as we pray for a faith never found wanting.
But something that takes this lesson a step further is the fact that the Collect speaks of faith, not in the resurrection, but “in Jesus Christ, our Lord and our God.” It is lifted beyond the Easter context and applied to the fullness of the Gospel. We are called to believe the words of the Prophets (the Bible), the humanity of our Lord (Christmas), the divinity of our Lord (Epiphany), the passion and death of our Lord (Lent), the resurrection (Easter), the ascension (Ascension), and return of Christ (Advent). Thus the language of this Collect is such that the feast of Saint Thomas could have been placed into the context of any season of the church year and still “fit”.
Enjoy this feast day, amidst the bustle of Christmas preparations that so easily swamp us at this time of the year.