1. How could the early Christians “sell their property and possessions and divide them among all according to each one’s needs”? Could you go this far? Or would you sell some? What about your time—could you give all of? Some of it?
2. Can you describe this early Christian community in a short sentence? Are there other groups that fit your description? How is your faith strengthened by the faith of others? Why did they “eat their meals with exultation”? What fills you with “awe”?
1. According to Pope Francis in Evangelii Gaudium, #276, was Christ’s resurrection just an event of the past?
Where all seems to be dead, signs of the resurrection suddenly spring up. Each day in our world beauty is born anew, it rises transformed through the storms of history. Values always tend to reappear under new guises, and human beings have arisen time after time from situations that seemed doomed. Such is the power of the resurrection, and all who evangelize are instruments of that power.
Evangelii Gaudium, #276
November 24, 2013
2. Hans Urs von Balthazar says this: “We are not the ones who grasp Christ and anchor ourselves to him. Rather, Christ has caught up with us and grasped us.” Which of these “graspings” makes you feel more secure? How does Balthazar’s sentence relate to this reading’s sentence, “God … gave us a new birth to a living hope through the resurrection”?
1. “Jesus came, although the doors were locked, and stood in their midst.” Can any doors be locked tight enough to keep Christ out? Explain. Do you yourself have “locked doors”? How is peace connected with forgiveness of sins?
2. Resurrections weren’t an everyday occurrence at the time this Gospel was written. Was it unusual for Thomas to be skeptical? Does John’s Gospel story of Thomas help those through the ages, who may have doubts about Jesus’ resurrection?
**From Saint Louis University