One of the famous 16th century Stavronikita Festal set of icons, this icon depicts the Confession of the Holy Apostle Thomas when he saw the Lord Risen and put his hand forth to touch His glorified side, exclaiming, “My Lord and My God!” The other Apostles doubted the witnesses of the Holy Myrrh-Bearing Women until Christ appeared before them alive, and showed them His wounds on the day of His Resurrection when they were gathered in the upper room without St. Thomas. He only asked to see what they had already seen. Yet today we see with the eyes of Faith.
The monk Theophanes the Cretan painted this set of icons on the iconostasis, or icon screen which separates the Bema, or sacred Altar, from the body of the Church, or Nave, where the Faithful stand for Divine Liturgy and other liturgical services. The set shows many of the most important events in the life of Jesus and the Church in its early and formative stage. This icon is the 12th in that set. Theophanes’ icons are considered masterpieces of iconographic art, still adorn the church at Stavronikita Monastery on Mount Athos, and show marvelous Cretan post-Byzantine form.