625. Jesus Appears to the Apostles with Thomas. Speech on Priesthood.

[9th August 1944]. prev home next

The apostles are gathered in the Supper room, around the table where the Passover supper was consumed. But out of respect, the central seat, that of Jesus, has been left empty.

Also the apostles, now that there is no longer One Who groups and distributes them according to His will or by choice of love, have placed themselves differently. Peter is still in his place. But Judas Thaddeus is now in John's place. Then comes Bartholomew, the oldest of the apostles, then James, John's brother, almost at the corner of the table on the right hand side, with respect to me who am looking on. John is sitting near James, but on the narrow side of the table. After Peter, instead, comes Matthew, and after him Thomas, then Philip, then Andrew, then James, Judas Thaddeus' brother, and Simon Zealot on the other sides. The long side in front of Peter is empty, as the apostles are sitting closer than they were at Passover.

The windows are closed and the doors are locked. The lamp, of which only two flames are lit, sheds a feeble light only on the table. The rest of the large room is in a dim light.

As there is a sideboard behind him, John is entrusted with the task of serving his companions with what they wish of their frugal meal, consisting of fish, which is on the table, bread, honey and fresh cheese. As he turns again towards the table, to give his elder brother the cheese he asked for, John sees the Lord.

Jesus has appeared in a very strange manner. The central part of the wall behind the apostles sitting at the table – a wall all of one piece except for the little door in the corner – brightens up at about one metre from the floor, with a feeble phosphoric light, like that shed by certain little pictures, which are luminous only in the dark at night. The light, about two metres high, is oval, like a niche. From the brilliancy, as if He were advancing from behind veils of luminous mist, Jesus emerges with increasing neatness.

I do not know whether I have made myself understood. His Body seems to flow through the thickness of the wall, which does not open. It remains compact, but the Body passes just the same. Light seems to be the first emanation of His Body, the announcement of His approach. The Body at first consists of soft lines of light, as in Heaven I see the Father and the holy angels: immaterial. Then it becomes more and more material, taking the aspect of a real body in everything, that of His Divine glorified Body.

It has taken me a long time to describe this, but it happened in a few seconds.

Jesus is dressed in white, as when He rose and appeared to His Mother. He is most handsome, loving and smiling. He is standing with His arms along the sides of His Body, a little detached from it, but with His Hands towards the floor and the palms towards the apostles. The two wounds of His Hands are like two diamond stars, from which two very bright beams issue. I do not see His Feet, covered by His tunic, or His Chest. But from the fabric of His garment, which is not an earthly one, light emanates where the divine Wounds are concealed. At the beginning Jesus seems to be nothing but a Body of lunar whiteness, later, when it materialises appearing outside the halo of light, His hair, eyes, skin have their natural colours. In short, it is Jesus, Jesus-Man-God, but looking more solemn now that He has risen.

John sees Him when He is already like that. Nobody else had become aware of the apparition. John jumps to his feet, dropping the plate of the little round whole cheeses on the table and, laying his hands on the edge of the table, he bends a little towards it sideways, as if he were attracted by a magnet, and in a low subdued voice he utters an intensely expressive « Oh! ».

The others, who had raised their heads from their plates at the noisy fall of the plate of the cheese and at John's start and had looked at him with astonishment, when they see his ecstatic posture, look in the same direction as he is looking. They turn their heads or they turn round, according to their position with respect to the Master, and they see Jesus. They all stand up, deeply moved and happy, and they rush towards Him, as He, smiling more brightly advances towards them, walking now on the floor like all mortals.

Jesus, Who previously looked fixedly only at John, and I think that the latter turned round because he felt attracted by that glance that caressed him, looks at them all and says: « Peace to you. »

They are all now around Him, some on their knees at His feet, and among these there is Peter with John – and John even kisses the hem of His tunic and presses it to his face as if he wished to be caressed by it – some farther back, standing, but stooping in a respectful attitude.

Peter, to arrive quicker, jumps over the seat without waiting for Matthew to come out first and make room for him. It must be borne in mind that the couch-seat served for two persons at a time.

The only one who has remained a little farther away, somewhat embarrassed, is Thomas. He is on his knees near the table. But he dare not come forward, on the contrary, he seems to be trying to hide behind the corner of the table.

Jesus, while stretching out His Hands to be kissed – the apostles seek them with holy loving eagerness – looks around at the lowered heads, as if He were looking for the eleventh. He has actually seen him from the very beginning and He is behaving so only to give Thomas time to pluck up courage and come forward. When He sees that the incredulous apostle dare not do so, ashamed as he is of his lack of faith, He calls him: « Thomas. Come here. »

Thomas raises his head, embarrassed, almost in tears, but he dare not go. He lowers his head again.

Jesus takes a few steps towards him and repeats: « Come here, Thomas. » Jesus' voice is more authoritative than the first time.

Thomas stands up reluctantly, abashed, and goes towards Jesus.

« Here is the man who does not believe unless he sees! » exclaims Jesus. But in His voice there is the smile of forgiveness.

Thomas feels that, he dares to look at Jesus and sees that He is really smiling, so he musters up courage and walks faster.

« Come here, quite close to Me. Look. Put your finger, if it is not sufficient for you to look, into the wounds of your Master. »

Jesus has stretched His Hands out, then He has opened His tunic on His chest, uncovering the gash on His Side. No light emanates now from the Wounds. It no longer emanates since He began to walk like a mortal Man, when He came out of the halo of lunar light, and the Wounds now appear in their bloody reality: two irregular holes, the left one of which extends as far as the thumb, and they pierce a wrist and a palm at its base, and a long gash, which in the upper part is lightly curved like a circumflex accent, on His Side.

Thomas trembles, looks but does not touch. He moves his lips, but is not able to speak clearly.

« Give Me your hand, Thomas » says Jesus so kindly. And with His right hand He takes the right one of the apostle, He grasps his forefinger and takes it towards the hole of His left Hand, He thrusts it well into it, to make him feel that His palm has been pierced, and then from His Hand He takes it to His Side. Now He grasps the four fingers of Thomas, at their base, at the metacarpus, and puts those four big fingers into the gash of His Side, making them go in deeply, not limiting Himself to leaning them against its edge, and He holds them there, looking fixedly at Thomas. A severe yet kind look, while he continues to say: « … Put your finger here, put your fingers and also your hand, if you wish so, into My Side and do not doubt, but believe. » That is what He says while doing what I have said previously.

Thomas – it would appear that the closeness of the divine Heart, which He almost touches, has communicated courage to him – succeeds at last in speaking and uttering words, and falling on his knees with his arms raised and bursting into tears of repentance, he says: « My Lord and My God! » He cannot say anything else.

Jesus forgives him. He lays His right hand on his head and replies: « Thomas, Thomas! You believe now because you have seen… But blessed are those who will believe in Me without seeing! Which reward shall I have to give them, if I have to reward you, whose faith has been assisted by the power of seeing?… »

Then Jesus lays His arm on John's shoulder, He takes Peter by the hand and approaches the table. He sits at His place. They are now sitting as they were on Passover evening. But Jesus wants Thomas to sit next to John.

« Eat, My friends » says Jesus.

But no one is hungry any more. Joy fills them. The joy of contemplation.

So Jesus gathers together the little cheeses scattered on the table, He puts them on a plate, He cuts them and hands them out, and He gives the first bit just to Thomas, laying it on a piece of bread and passing it behind John's shoulders; He pours wine from the amphorae into a chalice and hands it to His friends: this time Peter is the first to be served. Then He has some honeycombs given to Him, He breaks them and gives the first bit to John, with a smile which is sweeter than the golden trickling honey. And to encourage them He eats some of it Himself. He tastes nothing but the honey.

John with his usual gesture rests his head on Jesus' shoulder, and Jesus draws him to His Heart and speaks holding him so.

« You must not get upset, My friends, when I appear to you. I am always your Master, Who has shared with you food and sleep and Who has chosen you because He loves you. I love you also now. » Jesus lays much stress upon these last words.

« You » He continues « have been with Me in the trials… You will be with Me also in the glory. Do not lower your heads. On Sunday evening, when I came to you for the first time after My Resurrection, I infused the Holy Spirit into you… may the Spirit come also to you who were not present… Do you not know that the infusion of the Spirit is like a baptism of fire, because the Spirit is Love, and love cancels sins? Therefore your sin of desertion, while I was dying, is forgiven. »

In saying so Jesus kisses the head of John who did not desert, and John weeps for joy.

« I have given you the power to remit sins. But one cannot give what one does not possess. So you must be certain that I possess this power in a perfect manner and I make use of it for you, who must be pure in the highest degree to purify those who will come to you, soiled with sin. How could one judge and purify, if one deserved to be condemned and were personally impure? How could a man judge another man if he had planks in his own eyes and infernal weights in his heart? How could he say: “I absolve you in the name of God” if, because of his own sins, he did not have God with him?

My friends, consider your dignity of priests.

Before, I was among men to judge and to forgive. Now I am going to the Father. I am going back to My Kingdom. The faculty to judge is not taken off Me. On the contrary, it is entirely in My hands, because the Father has entrusted it to Me. But it is a terrible judgement because it will take place when it is no longer possible for man to obtain forgiveness through years of expiation on the Earth. Each human being will come to Me with his spirit when, through material death, he leaves his body as useless mortal remains. And I will judge him for the first time. Then Mankind will come again clothed with its flesh, resumed by divine order, to be separated into two parts. The lambs with the Shepherd, the wild billy-goats with their Torturer. But how many men would there be, who would be with their Shepherd, if after the Baptismal bath they did not have who can forgive them in My name?

That is why I create priests. To save those who had been saved by My Blood. My Blood saves. But men continue to fall into death. To fall again into Death. It is necessary for them to be continuously washed in It, seventy and seventy times seven, by those who have the authority to do so, so that they may not be a prey to Death. You and your successors will do that. That is why I absolve you of all your sins. Because you need to see, and sin blinds one, because it deprives the spirit of the Light which is God. Because you need to understand, and sin makes one dull, because it deprives the spirit of the Intelligence which is God. Because it is your ministry to purify, and sin sullies, because it deprives the spirit of the Purity which is God.

Great is your ministry of judging and absolving in My name!

When you consecrate the Bread and Wine for you and make them My Body and My Blood, you will do a great, supernaturally great and sublime thing. In order to accomplish it worthily you must be pure, because you will touch Him Who is the Pure One and you will nourish yourselves with the Flesh of a God. You must be pure in your hearts, minds, limbs and tongues, because with your hearts you must love the Eucharist, and no profane love is to be mixed with this celestial love, as that would be a sacrilege. Pure in your minds, because you must believe and understand this mystery of love, and the impurity of thought kills Faith and Intellect. The science of the world remains, but the Wisdom of God dies in you. You must be pure in your limbs, because the Word will descend into your bosoms, as it descended into Mary's womb by deed of the Love.

You have the living example of how a bosom, which receives the Word Incarnate, must be. The example is the Woman Who, without original sin and without personal sin, bore Me. Look how pure is the summit of the Hermon still enveloped in the veil of winter snow. From the Mount of Olives it looks like a lot of lilies stripped of their petals or like sea-foam, that rises like an offering against the other whiteness of the clouds, blown by the April wind along the blue fields of the sky. Look at a lily that now opens the mouth of its corolla to a scented smile. And yet both purities are not so bright as that of the womb that carried Me. Dust blown by the winds has fallen on the snow of the mountain and on the silk of the flower. Human eyes cannot perceive it, so light is it. But it is there, and it spoils the whiteness. Even more, look at the purest pearl taken from the sea, from the shell where it was born, to adorn the sceptre of a king. It is perfect in its compact iridescence, that is unaware of the desecrating touch of all flesh, as it was formed in the pearly hollow of the oyster, isolated in the sapphire fluid of sea depths. And yet it is not so pure as the womb that bore Me. In its centre there is a grain of sand: a very minute corpuscle, but still an earthly one. In Her Who is the Pearl of the Sea, there is no grain of sin, not even of incentive to sin. The Pearl born in the Ocean of the Trinity to bring the Second Person to the Earth, She is compact around Her fulcrum, which is not the seed of earthly concupiscence, but the spark of the eternal Love. The spark that found correspondence in Her and thus engendered the Divine Meteor, that now calls and draws to Itself the children of God: I, the Christ, the Morning Star. I give you that inviolate Purity as example.

But when, as vintagers do with vats, you dip your hands into the sea of My Blood and from it you draw what is needed to cleanse the soiled stoles of the poor wretches who committed sin, be perfect, in addition to being pure, in order not to stain yourselves with a greater sin, even more, with several sins, by shedding or touching the Blood of a God in a sacrilegious manner, or by failing in love and justice, denying or giving it with a severity that is not of the Christ, Who was good to the wicked to attract them to His Heart, and three times good with the weak, to encourage them to be trustful. Such severity would be used three times undeservedly, because it would be used against My Will, My Doctrine and Justice. How can one be severe with lambs when one is an idle shepherd?

O My beloved friends, whom I am sending along the roads of the world to continue the work that I began and that will be pursued until the end of Time, remember these words of Mine. I am telling you them so that you may repeat them to those whom you will consecrate to the ministry, to which I have consecrated you.

I see… I look at future ages… Time and the infinite crowds of men that will exist are all in front of Me… I see… massacres and wars, false peace treaties and horrible slaughters, hatred and robbery, sensuality and pride. Now and again a green oasis: a period of return to the Cross. Like an obelisk that indicates pure water among the arid sands of the desert, My Cross will be raised with love, after the poison of evil has made men rabid, and around it, planted on the edges of healthy waters, there will thrive the palms of a period of peace and wealth in the world. Spirits, like deer and gazelles, like swallows and doves will rush to that pleasant, cool, nourishing shelter, to be cured of their sorrows and hope once again. And it will gather its branches close together like a dome as a protection from storms and dog-days and will keep away serpents and wild animals with the Sign that puts Evil to flight. And it will be so, as long as men so wish.

I see… Men and men… women, old people, children, warriors, scholars, doctors, peasants… They all come and pass by with their loads of hopes and sorrows. And I see many stagger, because their sorrow is too great, and their hope has slipped off the load first of all, as the load is too heavy, and their hope has crumbled on the ground… And I see many fall on the roadsides, because they are pushed by others who are stronger, stronger or luckier, as their weights are lighter. And I see many who, feeling that they are abandoned by those who pass by, and they are even trampled on, and feeling that they are about to die, go to the extent of hating and cursing.

Poor children! Among all these, struck by life, who pass by or fall, My Love has deliberately spread some compassionate Samaritans, good doctors, lights in the night, voices in the silence, so that the weak who fall may find assistance, and once again they may see Light and hear the Voice that says: “Hope. You are not alone. Over you there is God. Jesus is with you.” I have deliberately placed this active charity, so that My poor children may not die in their spirits, losing their paternal abode, and they may continue to believe in Me-Love, seeing My reflection in My ministers.

But, o grief that makes the Wound of My Heart bleed as it did when it was opened on Golgotha! But what do My divine eyes see? Are there perhaps no priests among the infinite crowds passing by? Is that why My Heart is bleeding? Are seminaries empty? So does My divine invitation no longer resound in hearts? Is man's heart no longer capable of hearing it? No. Throughout ages there will be seminaries and Levites in them. Priests will come out of them, because in the hour of adolescence My invitation will have sounded with a celestial voice in many hearts, and they will have followed it. But other, other, other voices will have come later with their youth and maturity, and My Voice will have been overwhelmed in those hearts. My Voice that speaks throughout ages to its ministers, that they may always be what you are now: the apostles at Christ's school. The cassock has remained. But the priest is dead. This will happen to too many in the course of ages. Useless dark shadows, they will not be a lever that lifts, a rope that pulls, a fountain that quenches people's thirst, corn that satisfies their hunger, a heart that is a pillow, a light in darkness, a voice that repeats what the Master says to him. But for poor mankind they will be a weight of scandal, a weight of death, a parasite, a putrefaction… Horror! Once again and always I shall have the greatest Judases of the future in My priests!

My friends, I am in My glory, and yet I weep. I take pity on these infinite crowds, herds without shepherds or with too few shepherds. Infinite pity! Well, I swear it on My Divinity, I will give them the bread, the water, the light, the voice that those chosen for this work do not want to give. I will repeat the miracle of the loaves and fish in future ages. With few mean little fish, and with scanty crusts of bread – humble laic souls – I will give food to many people, and they will be satisfied, and there will be some for those of the future, because “I feel sorry for this people” and I do not want it to perish.

Blessed are those who will deserve to be such. Not blessed because they are such. But because they will have deserved it with their love and sacrifice. And most blessed those priests who will remain apostles: bread, water, light, voice, rest and medicine for My poor children. They will shine in Heaven with a special light. I swear it to you, I Who am the Truth.

Let us get up, My friends, and come with Me, that I may teach you again to pray. It is prayer that nourishes the strength of the apostle, because it blends him with God. »

And here Jesus stands up and goes towards the little staircase.

But when He is at its bottom, He turns round and looks at me. Oh! Father! He looks at me! He thinks of me! He looks for His little « voice », and the joy of being with His friends does not make Him forget me! He looks at me over the heads of the disciples, and smiles at me. He raises His hand blessing me and He says: « Peace be with you ».

And the vision ends.

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