The School's Name
Why is it named after St. Thomas?
For two reasons: One, it is to honor Subdeacon Thomas, who for many years and even now is a strong evangelical presence within the life of St. John.
A second reason is our desire to have St. Thomas to be the patron of the school. St. Thomas, also commonly known as “Doubting Thomas,” is perhaps best known for telling his fellow Apostles regarding the risen Christ, “Unless I see in His hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe” (John 20:25).
What is less known about Thomas, however, is that after seeing the resurrected Christ, St. John Chrysostom tells us that he “toiled through the grace of God more bravely, more zealously and tirelessly than them all, so that he went preaching over nearly all the earth, not fearing to proclaim the Word of God to savage nations.”1
After founding Christian churches in Palestine, Mesopotamia, Parthia, Ethiopia and India, preaching the Gospel earned him a martyr’s death after having converted the wife and son of the prefect of the Indian city of Meliapur [Melipur]. 2
Christ did not rebuke the doubt of Thomas. Jesus encouraged him, saying, “Reach your finger here, and look at My hands; and reach your hand here, and put it into My side. Do not be unbelieving, but believing.” However, Jesus made it clear, as we recently heard from Fr. Aidan, that mature believers no longer live in doubt. Jesus went on to say to Thomas, “Because you have seen Me, you have believed. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” So, come to the St. Thomas school. Bring your doubts, not to embrace doubting, as is now fashionable, but to learn the answers of the Church. Let us not be unbelieving, but believing.