Thursday, July 02, 2009

Being Built Together into a Dwelling Place of God

July 3, 2009

Feast of St. Thomas, Apostle

By Melanie Rigney

You are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the holy ones and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the Apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone. Through him the whole structure is held together and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord; in him you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit. (Ephesians 2:19-22)

Praise the Lord, all you nations! Give glory, all you peoples! The Lord’s love for us is strong; the Lord is faithful forever. Hallelujah! (Psalms 117:1-2)

Thomas, called Didymus, one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples said to him, "We have seen the Lord.” But Thomas said to them, "Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands and put my finger into the nailmarks and put my hand into his side, I will not believe." (John 20:24-25)


O God, with whom every good thing has its beginning, and through whom it is improved and increased: grant, we beseech Thee to us who cry to Thee, that this work, which we are beginning for the praise of Thy name, may be happily brought to completion through the neverfailing gift of Thy fatherly wisdom. Through Christ our Lord Amen. (Blessing of the Cornerstone of a New Building, translated by the Most Reverend J. H. Schlarman, Bishop of Peoria, Illinois, 1930-1951)


Poor Thomas. He just didn’t get it. It was beyond his comprehension or that of the other apostles that God was there with them all the time, whether they could see Christ or not, whether they could touch him or not. God was there in them as well, though it took the coming of the Holy Spirit for Thomas and the others to understand that God could act in them as well as in Christ. They were part of what Paul calls the household of God.

Poor us. We just don’t get it either. We see God’s presence in the ones we admire and love, in their sacrifices and gifts large and small. Maybe it’s our parents or spiritual director or Cursillo sponsor or group reunion members. But being a Christian isn’t about standing on the edge of the property and admiring the temple’s framing and craftsmanship; it’s about letting God and His incredibly strong love turn each of us into His dwelling place.

We are continually under construction. Sometimes it seems to us the mortar is a little runny, the beams a little rough. Still, we are by our baptism made part of a place with the strongest of foundations. Use the Cursillo principles of piety, action, and study to open yourself to the Master Builder’s honing and planing.


What part of your construction project is most in need of some special attention? Discuss your plans with a trusted friend.