Thomas, Saint

Thomas, Saint, one of the Twelve Apostles, called Didymus. According to John, he refused to believe in the resurrection until he saw Jesus' wounds; hence the expression “doubting Thomas.” John 11.16; 14.5; 20.24–29; 21.2. By tradition he is said to have gone as missionary to Parthia or India. The Syriac-rite Christians of Malabar, India, whose church was established by the 3d cent., claim St. Thomas as their founder. Among the Pseudepigrapha are a Gospel of Thomas and Acts of Thomas. In addition, a Gospel of Thomas was among the 4th-century Coptic books found at Nag Hammadi. Feast: Dec. 21.

See E. Pagels, Beyond Belief: The Secret Gospel of Thomas (2003).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2023, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Early Christianity: Biographies