Thomas vs. Enmegahbowh

For the second straight day we get a man named Thomas opposed by a saint with a fantastic name. In 24 hours we’ve gone from Merton to the Apostle; from Philander to Enmegahbowh. But, of course, in Lent Madness saints don’t emerge victorious by fanciful names alone. Otherwise Engelbert Humperdinck would be canonized and win the Golden Halo.

Bracket Buster Alert! In one of the most hotly-contested battles to date, Philander Chase stormed past Thomas Merton late yesterday afternoon and never looked back. Despite a late surge by Merton, Chase held on to win 52% to 48% in record voting (2,711 votes cast) and commenting (142 comments). Spurred on by an army of Kenyon College alumni, this may go down as one of the greatest upsets in Lent Madness history.

Check in with the updated bracket and view the calendar of upcoming battles as we mark one full week of Lent Madness action.

Thomas, aka “Doubting” Thomas, aka “Didymus,” aka “The Twin,” is best known for wanting something more than his fellow-apostles’ word that Jesus had appeared to them in the flesh after he had been crucified. It could also be noted that Thomas was the only apostle to leave the house after Jesus’ crucifixion when everyone else was waiting inside with the doors locked out of fear. When Jesus returned to the house a second time, Thomas, despite his stated demands for hands-on proof, did not hesitate to call the resurrected Jesus “My Lord and my God!”

Thomas does not appear often in the gospels, but his few recorded words speak of someone willing to follow Jesus wherever he may go no matter the cost. When Jesus decided to visit Mary and Martha after the death of Lazarus, despite the danger to himself, it is Thomas who says, “Let us also go, that we may die with him.” When Jesus tells the disciples during the Last Supper that he “will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also. And you know the way to the place where I am going,” it is Thomas who says, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?”

After the resurrection, Thomas’ willingness to follow Jesus evidently did not flag. Legend has it that he went to India where, after converting many people (and baptizing the three kings of the Nativity story), he was martyred by an angry king who had him run through with a sword. The church in India claims Thomas as its founder and patron saint to this day.

Collect for Thomas: Almighty and everliving God, who strengthened your apostle Thomas with sure and certain faith in your Son’s resurrection: Grant us so perfectly and without doubt to believe in Jesus Christ, our Lord and our God, that our faith may never be found wanting in your sight; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

— Laura Toepfer

Called the “Providential Man” by church historian Theodore Holcombe, Enmegahbowh, or John Johnson as he was known at his baptism, was the first Native American to be ordained a deacon and priest. Born about a day’s journey north of Toronto in c. 1820 Enmegahbowh, the son of a chief, was set apart as a healer from childhood. Indeed, his name means “the man who stands by his people.”

He learned to speak English when he journeyed to Minnesota as a translator for Methodist missionaries. However, like many of us, he was wooed to the Episcopal Church by the language after a chaplain at Fort Snelling presented him with a copy of the Book of Common Prayer.  He began a correspondence with the missionary priest Dr. James Lloyd Breck and invited him to establish a mission in Gull Lake. Upon his arrival Enmegahbowh was baptized and, in 1859, he was ordained as a deacon. In these years he maintained a peaceful and courageous presence at the St. Columba’s Mission in the midst of great turmoil and violence among the white settlers and local Chippewa people.

In 1867 Bishop Henry Whipple ordained him to the priesthood and a year later he and his remarkable wife Biwabiko-geshig-equay (stay tuned for more on her in the next round if Enmegahbowh advances) moved – at the invitation of more than 100 chiefs and principal men of the tribe – to serve the people of the White Earth reservation. He died there after nearly 40 years of quiet ministry on June 12, 1902.

A tower of strength, constancy, and patience, “Enmegahbowh was a herald of all our Indian work;” wrote Holcombe in his 1902 biography of Breck. [He was] “the man who cried from the wilderness, ‘Come over and help us’, the man who opened the door for all that has since followed of God’s work for the Indians, even to the Pacific Coast.”

A Collect for Enmegahbowh: Almighty God, you led your pilgrim people of old with fire and cloud: Grant that the ministers of your Church, following the example of blessed Enmegahbowh, may stand before your holy people, leading them with fiery zeal and gentle humility. This we ask through Jesus, the Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God now and for ever. Amen.

— Heidi Shott

Vote!

Thomas vs. Enmegahbowh

  • Enmegahbowh (52%, 1,027 Votes)
  • Thomas (48%, 938 Votes)

Total Voters: 1,964

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117 Comments to "Thomas vs. Enmegahbowh"

  1. March 1, 2012 - 8:14 am | Permalink

    Very clever, Heidi, to offer us an incentive to vote for Enmegahbowh so we can find out more about his remarkable wife Biwabiko-geshig-equay in the next round!

    • March 2, 2012 - 11:46 am | Permalink

      yes, i am interested in biwabiko-geshig-equay! when will we hear about her? hi heidi! love lenten madness! thanks to all who are making it possible!

  2. March 1, 2012 - 8:14 am | Permalink

    I have great respect for Enmegahbowh, but Thomas is my man! Thomas and his need for evidence together with Peter and his constant screw-ups are my “patrons” among the Twelve. I am more like them than I would like to admit.

  3. Lauren Stanley's Gravatar Lauren Stanley
    March 1, 2012 - 8:18 am | Permalink

    Thomas vs. Enmegahbowh: I love them both. Thomas questioned yet acted, doubted yet believed. Emmegahbowh believed and acted. Both are role models … but Thomas got my vote in the end. Because of him, I ate pansies in the pulpit. Acting when you are certain whether and what you believe equals faith.

    • Scott's Gravatar Scott
      March 1, 2012 - 9:02 am | Permalink

      Lauren – I think that last sentence needs a rewrite! 8^)

      I confess I had never heard of Emmegahbowh before the other day when I looked at the bracket, and I expect it will be quite a while before I spell his name with confidence.

      One of the great values of this silly tapas sanctoral-education experiment.

      • Lauren Stanley's Gravatar Lauren Stanley
        March 1, 2012 - 3:41 pm | Permalink

        You’re right, Scott. Should have said “acting when you are NOT certain …”

  4. David Cobb's Gravatar David Cobb
    March 1, 2012 - 8:43 am | Permalink

    Thomas has his own day – in December and always gets the Second Sunday of Easter- how much more attention does he need? Emmegahbowh- his pastoral work and his connection with Breck (and SWTS alums out there remember the Breck Missionary Society?) and the promise of hearing about his wife- he’s the one to go with.

    • Sarah R.'s Gravatar Sarah R.
      March 1, 2012 - 12:56 pm | Permalink

      Amen!

  5. DMac's Gravatar DMac
    March 1, 2012 - 8:49 am | Permalink

    I can relate best with Thomas. As I see him, he is evidence based and a little jaded, imperfect and yet Jesus values him. It give me hope in my own imperfection that I can honor and serve “just as I am”.

    • Catherine's Gravatar Catherine
      March 1, 2012 - 10:54 am | Permalink

      Agreed! I have often found many in the Bible hard to emulate, but Thomas is a man after my own skeptical heart!

  6. Valerie's Gravatar Valerie
    March 1, 2012 - 9:08 am | Permalink

    I voted for Thomas, but now I want to know more about Enmeagabow`s wife. How will you tell us more about her if Thomas wins?

  7. aleathia nicholson's Gravatar aleathia nicholson
    March 1, 2012 - 9:11 am | Permalink

    Give the Indians….or to be PC..native Americans…a break and let them win for once without the Lone Ranger charging in. He’s no Tonto and God was on his side and his obviously fabulous wife who, by the by, should be able to make it on her own merits, not as if she were joined at the hip to and dependent on him. But that’s another story for another day. Let her stand on her own no matter the outcome of his battle with a saint.

    • aleathia nicholson's Gravatar aleathia nicholson
      March 1, 2012 - 9:15 am | Permalink

      Moderation?

  8. Sarah's Gravatar Sarah
    March 1, 2012 - 9:12 am | Permalink

    I completed a project on Enmegahbowh in divinity school. The choice is between a gnostic gospeler who doubted Jesus (frankly an overexposed individual if you ask me) and an Episcopal priest and deacon. As a cradle Epsicopalian I couldn’t vote against Enmegahbowh, a man of high moral charcter who opened up the Church to first nations peoples.

    • Sue's Gravatar Sue
      March 1, 2012 - 11:45 am | Permalink

      I couldn’t agree more!

    • Christopher Nimmo's Gravatar Christopher Nimmo
      March 1, 2012 - 5:43 pm | Permalink

      I’m sorry… you believe Thomas wrote the Gospel of Thomas? He certainly deserves a Golden Halo for being fantastically long-lived then…

  9. Peggy Blanchard's Gravatar Peggy Blanchard
    March 1, 2012 - 9:15 am | Permalink

    Thomas has long been a comfort to me–I was born asking questions! His feast day was the day of my ordination to the priesthood, too, so I really must vote for him. Emmegahbowh’s life of service is also an inspiration–the hardest part of this Lenten challenge is feeling like I’m letting the “other candidate” down by not voting for her or him!

  10. March 1, 2012 - 9:20 am | Permalink

    Go Enmegahbow!

  11. Ann Case's Gravatar Ann Case
    March 1, 2012 - 9:28 am | Permalink

    “wooed to the Episcopal Church by the language … of the Book of Common Prayer.”
    “strength, constancy and patience” – I’ve found a new model! I know Thomas but I want to know more about this man. As someone said, “Go, Enmegahbowh!”

  12. Mary Lou Creamer's Gravatar Mary Lou Creamer
    March 1, 2012 - 9:31 am | Permalink

    This was definitely a touch call. Thomas vs. Enmegahbowh: I too love them both. But it was Thomas’ ability to question and then believe and act that has always made him a favorite with me. Yet, while I read Enmegahbowh’s bio, I couldn’t help but be struck by the line that said he was “wooed into the EC by the language of the BCP.” So many have said that is what drew them into our church. Why then do we feel the need to move away from that beautiful language? Just me pondering….

  13. Dennis Johnson's Gravatar Dennis Johnson
    March 1, 2012 - 9:36 am | Permalink

    Enmeganbowh all the way!

  14. Harry Moncelle's Gravatar Harry Moncelle
    March 1, 2012 - 9:36 am | Permalink

    I have just become a fan of the man who stands by his people! I know of Thomas, and I too have had doubts from time to time…but I must vote for this outstanding fellow who demonstrated such faith and led so many to Jesus. Go Go Go ST. Enmegahbowh!!!

  15. Patricia Nakamura's Gravatar Patricia Nakamura
    March 1, 2012 - 9:37 am | Permalink

    I’ve lways felt Thomas misunderstood and misrepresented. He was not doubting Jesus; he was doubting his fellow apostles. Likely he thought them somewhat crazed by grief and confusion, and resorting to wishful thinking. He was unwilling to accept rumor and hearsay. A wise man, Thomas!

  16. March 1, 2012 - 9:51 am | Permalink

    OK folks. Thomas already has his red letter day, and also gets the benefit of being highlighted the Sunday after Easter. I don*t care if it is Low Sunday. Enmegahbowh was the forerunner to the EC work with the Native Americans all the way West. Come on, Seabury folk. I know you are out there. The Seabury part of Seabury-Western was originally in Faribault, MN: Whipple and Breck-land. GO GO GO ST. Enmegahbowh!

  17. March 1, 2012 - 9:54 am | Permalink

    This is a no-lose vote either way. Thomas is a role model for the depth and sincerity of his embodied, engaged, active faith. The world needs more people who are bold in their questioning and faithful in their action. Still, I voted for Enmegahbowh. I’m always suspicious when institutions of a dominant/imperial culture praise a “peace-making” member of a subjugated one, so I did a web-search on him to quell my concerns. Enmegahbowh was neither a tool nor a pawn. He was an impassioned and powerful advocate who sought peaceful solutions for the most difficult, painful conflicts around him…and I can’t wait to learn more about his wife!

  18. Sean's Gravatar Sean
    March 1, 2012 - 9:55 am | Permalink

    I’m still licking my wounds over Merton’s loss to a man with perhaps the worst first name in history. Sorry Kenyon alums, I don’t get it. I will be reading Merton for years and years to come. Seriously Tim, why not let Chase and Lenyon alums duke it out with JH Hobart and Hobart College alums rather than THE modern mystic. Where are the ex-Romans when we need them. It is sort of like Northern Iowa being allowed to play in the tourney and upsetting Kansas. Just. Plain. Wrong. And not to be outdone we have today’s wonky matchup with the ever unpronounceable “Enmegabowh.” I get it.. it’s likely “En- Mega-Bow,” but seriously, what good Episcopalian could stand with the saint with questions named Thomas. Besides, he starred in R.E.M.’s “Losing My Religion” video. That’s star power.

    Tongue firmly planted in cheek,

    Sean

  19. Heidi Shott's Gravatar Heidi Shott
    March 1, 2012 - 9:58 am | Permalink

    Thomas, an icon
    For faith tempered by doubt
    E, the real, live deal

    • Renee Emerson's Gravatar Renee Emerson
      March 1, 2012 - 10:38 pm | Permalink

      Heidi: gorgeous almost haiku defense (unless -ed becomes a syllable sung as it is in some hymns) here. I am in total agreement. Enmegahbow had to sacrifice his beloved wife and sons to save settlers,I think. The pain of that must have been excruciating. I vote for Enmehgahbow.

  20. Mary's Gravatar Mary
    March 1, 2012 - 10:00 am | Permalink

    This was a difficult vote for me. Enmeagabow is an amazing individual but Thomas has held a place in my heart since I was a teenager and stuggling with my faith.
    In the early 1990’s, when I was 12 or 13, I admitted to my mother I was unsure and having trouble understanding the mysteries of Christianity (and also the church’s stance on certain social issues). My mother called me a “doubting Thomas” and said I did not have faith. It wounded me. I continued to attend church but my heart was no longer in it. I was angry that I was told I could never question any part of what I was being taught. To do so lessened my commitment to Christ somehow.
    I relayed what happened to a friend of mine and she told her that her father (who was the spiritual guide of her family) encouraged her questions and doubts because, he said, they had the power to strenthen her faith. He did not want her to blindly follow a religion just to follow it–or because it was her family’s tradition.
    I believe this is why the principles of Scripture, Tradition and Reason of the Episcopal Church were so important to me when I left church of my youth and was searching for a spiritual home. There is was, simply stated: God gave you a brain and you can use it. To me, Thomas represents the individual who questions but who’s faith is strengthen by the answers.

    • Manuel's Gravatar Manuel
      March 1, 2012 - 12:04 pm | Permalink

      This is exactly why I voted for Thomas. Well said Mary. I was raised Catholic in Latin America, which meant that questioning any aspect of the faith, the church’s dictums or the church itself was a quick trip to damnation. That spiritual straighjacket was one reason that drove me away from the church for years. By contrast, I greatly value the openness of the Episcopal church to reason and to question as an avenue to strengthen your faith. That’s what Thomas teached us, and why he got my vote.

  21. Becky Adams's Gravatar Becky Adams
    March 1, 2012 - 10:04 am | Permalink

    oh can’t belive the upset and Thomas Merton losing! What a disappointment.

  22. Mary-Elise's Gravatar Mary-Elise
    March 1, 2012 - 10:05 am | Permalink

    I am wondering if it was John Johnson vs. Thomas if the current vote split would be different. With that said, I’m voting for the cool name.

  23. TheBelgianGuy's Gravatar TheBelgianGuy
    March 1, 2012 - 10:06 am | Permalink

    Thomas gave us the enduring image: “Let me put my hands in your side!” How that has impacted many of us. He converted all of India. And he is in the Episcopal tradition. Vote for him.

  24. Deborah Bedard's Gravatar Deborah Bedard
    March 1, 2012 - 10:23 am | Permalink

    I voted for Thomas but I must admit, this was one hard contest. I feel this will be a close call because both men are so deserving.

  25. March 1, 2012 - 10:29 am | Permalink

    As a doubter myself, I have a real soft spot for Thomas!

  26. Father Rico's Gravatar Father Rico
    March 1, 2012 - 10:29 am | Permalink

    This was a tough one! Thomas is my patron saint, as I have always forged my faith in a crucible of doubt. But I so appreciate the trailblazing that Enmegahbowh embodies, his unsung ministry speaks to me of all the quiet faith enacting in places far from bishops’ seats. And I know first-hand the powerful impact of seeing someone who looks like you up at the altar, so I imagine it must have been poignant for his Native American congregants to have him as their spiritual leader. That, in seeing him, they felt seen. So, this year at least, my vote is for the E-Man.

  27. Jane Schmoetzer's Gravatar Jane Schmoetzer
    March 1, 2012 - 10:31 am | Permalink

    Thomas is a wonderful icon; however, as many note, he is already clearly recognized multiple times on our calendar. I learned about Enmagahbowh much later, but his story is also worth retelling. And I really do want to know more about his wife.

    P.S. The name is pronounced very close to its spelling, with the accent on the third syllable: En-meh-GAH-bo.

  28. Kelly Donovan's Gravatar Kelly Donovan
    March 1, 2012 - 10:32 am | Permalink

    First of all, ugh & tarnation, I missed my chance to vote for Merton yesterday because I could not use my laptop! AHHHH! Fine, temper tantrum done. Mostly.
    Now, Thomas or Enmegahbowh: both are faith personified, just arrived at by different tracks. I’m intrigued by the teaser about Enmegahbowh’s wife, but having been a doubter myself, Thomas has my vote. Plus his name is Thomas, symbolic of Merton. Now my tantrum is done.

  29. tracy's Gravatar tracy
    March 1, 2012 - 10:35 am | Permalink

    About Enmeagabowh: How can we hope to understand a person with not one mention of what he said or wrote?

    I’m stuck thinking that reading about Enmegahbowh here is a little like reading about Bonhoeffer with just a sentence about his having been from Germany. What exatly did a “peaceful and courageous presence” look like when Indians were being slaughtered and moved around like pawns?

  30. Noel's Gravatar Noel
    March 1, 2012 - 10:35 am | Permalink

    Oh, my goodness! They’re tied right now! My vote is for Thomas. He gives us the reassurance that it’s okay to ask the questions and still believe in and be loved by Jesus.

  31. DnzsWithWombats's Gravatar DnzsWithWombats
    March 1, 2012 - 10:37 am | Permalink

    I always think of Thomas when the Host is raised up during the Eucharist. I borrow and think it silently to myself Thomas’ phrase, “My Lord and my God!”. Thomas gets my vote, with all due respect to the good Father Enmegahbowh.

    • March 1, 2012 - 10:53 pm | Permalink

      The children’s missal that I received for my first communion went through the mass with a picture of what the priest was doing on one page, and words of prayer or explanation on the facing page. The only thing I remember from it is that, the picture that showed the moment of elevation of the host, had Thomas’ words, My Lord and My God, and nothing else, on the facing page.

  32. Sarah's Gravatar Sarah
    March 1, 2012 - 10:44 am | Permalink

    Ooh! I tied it up! As much as I love Enmeagabowh’s name, I have to vote for Thomas. He reminds us daily that we need to believe, not to see.

  33. Phyllis's Gravatar Phyllis
    March 1, 2012 - 10:50 am | Permalink

    And I managed to untie it. I love them both, and I respect them both. I ended up voting for Thomas, because his doubt AND steadfastness both speak to me. Even if I do want to know more about Enmeagabowh’s wife.

  34. Meredyth's Gravatar Meredyth
    March 1, 2012 - 10:53 am | Permalink

    I’m voting for Emmegabowh. Thomas gets enough press already, and E deserves more recognition.

  35. Marguerite's Gravatar Marguerite
    March 1, 2012 - 10:54 am | Permalink

    Voted for Thomas. Simple as that. My favorite of the 12.

  36. Margaret Smist's Gravatar Margaret Smist
    March 1, 2012 - 10:55 am | Permalink

    Aren’t we all Thomas’s at different points in our lives? He got my vote today!

  37. March 1, 2012 - 11:08 am | Permalink

    I’m from Missouri the “Show-Me” state. Gotta go with Thomas. But I love learning about Enmegahbowh!! Do we have a phonetic pronunciation of his name?

  38. March 1, 2012 - 11:14 am | Permalink

    Ever since one of our deacons preached it as “Blessed Thomas,” I have trouble thinking of him any other way. Which is great. But despite my fondness for him, my ability to relate to his desire to question and seek more, and how amazing he was, Enmegahbowh gets my vote. Why? Because of being a forerunner, which I can also relate to, and for being such an icon of the power of love and the Holy Spirit in the midst of turmoil – something our present world needs a lot more of.

  39. Marguerite's Gravatar Marguerite
    March 1, 2012 - 11:17 am | Permalink

    After the past few days…and especially yesterday, I’ve decided that the name “Lent Madness” is no exaggeration at all.

    • Kate's Gravatar Kate
      March 1, 2012 - 11:53 am | Permalink

      Praise God February 29th occurs only once every four years. Merton bounced? Yesterday was pure madness.

  40. Katharine W.'s Gravatar Katharine W.
    March 1, 2012 - 11:55 am | Permalink

    After agonizing over yesterday’s choice, this is fairly simple — though not easy — for me. I love Thomas. But several things strike me about Enmegahbowh: he came to Anglicanism through the language, and he was clearly, as much as Thomas, a person who questioned. He questioned cultures, he questioned assumptions, he, too, was a man whose faith was built not on complacent surety but on questions. And he worked tirelessly against violence (whites against tribes and tribes against whites). To the best of my limited knowledge, he wasn’t someone who ever tried to force people to fit a mold, of culture or belief. And it must, as someone else said, have meant something to First Nations people to see him as priest. A man about respect and love and Holy Spirit? He’s got my vote!

  41. MyS's Gravatar MyS
    March 1, 2012 - 11:56 am | Permalink

    I love that Thomas isn’t certain, I love that he has the courage to ask, I love that he doesn’t just rely on what the others are telling him, and I love that Jesus is patient with him and gives him what he needs. Truth is not the same as certainty; certainty is not the same as being right. Thomas’ willingness to seek information, yet to stay on the path without knowing where it led, trusting that he will find his way along that path better through honoring his doubts and not being ashamed of them is something that I find very powerful. I hate when people know I don’t know something; I struggle with asking for help. To ask the risen Jesus “let me touch you” — the boldness and the trust that displays is humbling, and the answer he receives is immensely comforting to me.

  42. Vicki's Gravatar Vicki
    March 1, 2012 - 11:57 am | Permalink

    And Enmegahbowh looks like such a darling, kind, gentle man in his picture – I would invite him and his wife to dinner any day of the week. That is not something I would say about a lot of saints, even the ones I greatly admire.

  43. March 1, 2012 - 12:02 pm | Permalink

    A contest that pits one of the original 12 with the first Indigenous Episcopal Priest is, in my mind, like the Heat playing the Bobcats. But seeing the score my bet is on Enmegahbowh. I always love hearing the Thomas story when it comes around in the Lectionary but after working with the Ojibwe these last five years I have to say that Enmegahbowh is “The Man.”

    • Sarah R.'s Gravatar Sarah R.
      March 1, 2012 - 12:55 pm | Permalink

      Well said!

  44. Carol Buckalew's Gravatar Carol Buckalew
    March 1, 2012 - 12:07 pm | Permalink

    Another tough one. “The world is filled with the saints of God who love to do Jesus’ will” – Hymn 293
    I want to hear more about E and his wife, but I had to go with Thomas even if he does already have his own day.

  45. Laura's Gravatar Laura
    March 1, 2012 - 12:08 pm | Permalink

    As a scientist, Thomas speaks to me deeply. But Enmegahbowh’s “peaceful and courageous presence” in the midst of violence gets my vote.

    • Laura's Gravatar Laura
      March 1, 2012 - 12:14 pm | Permalink

      Just looked up E’s wife and found very little initially. It appears that the translation of her name is Iron Sky Woman. Just throwing that out there…

  46. Jennifer's Gravatar Jennifer
    March 1, 2012 - 12:11 pm | Permalink

    Argh! Another impossible choice.
    Thank you, Mainecelt, for your comments addressing things I wonder about too. I’m going to trust your research. ‘Course, if you’re leading me astray it would be better for you if a great millstone were fastened around your neck and you were drowned in the depth of the sea…but I trust you. No pressure.
    Thanks also to all the folks who’ve pointed out that Thomas’ life and witness are already recognized and honoured by the church, whereas Enmegahbowh deserves to be more widely known. You’ve helped me make an impossible choice.
    I love Thomas – I named a son after him.
    I’m voting for Enmegahbowh.

  47. Mary W. Cox's Gravatar Mary W. Cox
    March 1, 2012 - 12:16 pm | Permalink

    “John Johnson”–really?!
    But Enmegahbowh served God–
    and us–anyway.

  48. March 1, 2012 - 12:24 pm | Permalink

    As another doubting believer, Thomas tells me it’s OK to be like that and gets my vote. Anyway my Thomas got beaten yesterday….

  49. Joe Stroud's Gravatar Joe Stroud
    March 1, 2012 - 12:27 pm | Permalink

    What Joan said: “and for being such an icon of the power of love and the Holy Spirit in the midst of turmoil – something our present world needs a lot more of.”

  50. Martin Goshgarian's Gravatar Martin Goshgarian
    March 1, 2012 - 12:32 pm | Permalink

    I find it rather unseemly that you have included in this game someone who is a New Testament saint and whose feast has been a red-letter day since 1549, and is thus to be honored by all who profess to follow the discipline of the Book of Common Prayer.

    • Vicki's Gravatar Vicki
      March 1, 2012 - 1:53 pm | Permalink

      Why “unseemly”? PLEASE elucidate.

  51. Arne Bergland's Gravatar Arne Bergland
    March 1, 2012 - 12:39 pm | Permalink

    Just because I have caught walleye on Gull Lake. Thomas gets his due throughout the church calendar anyway.

  52. Michelle C. Jackson's Gravatar Michelle C. Jackson
    March 1, 2012 - 12:40 pm | Permalink

    Enmegahbowh has a feast day, also, doesn’t he? June 12, unless the GC took it away. I am voting for Thomas, gotta love the doubters, as well as the rocks.

  53. Janet's Gravatar Janet
    March 1, 2012 - 12:54 pm | Permalink

    Thomas is surely a saint every Christian can identify with, a role model to inspire us all. We struggle with our doubts in darkness and hard times, but in the presence of Jesus we say “My Lord and my God!” To not vote for this humble, human, spirit-filled man because he has a red-letter day on the Church calendar – just what is the logic of that?

  54. March 1, 2012 - 12:55 pm | Permalink

    Enmegahbowh took the day here with my little people, without a great deal of commentary. I was surprised, since one child has Thomas in his name… but both voted resoundingly for Enmegahbowh. I was a bit torn, myself.
    Is there a post somewhere about how the match-ups were determined? I got some questions about that today.

  55. dr.primrose's Gravatar dr.primrose
    March 1, 2012 - 12:59 pm | Permalink

    Too many ties to Minnesota and too much knowlege of the continuing good work the Native American churches do in the upper middle west to vote for anyone other than Enmegahbowh!

  56. March 1, 2012 - 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Although I think Thomas is one of the most profound disciples alongside Peter because of his confessions of faith, I had to vote for Enmegahbowh today because I was ordained on his feast day.

  57. Johannas Jordan's Gravatar Johannas Jordan
    March 1, 2012 - 1:03 pm | Permalink

    Dr. Primrose said it all.
    And I know nothing about his wife and I want to learn more about her in the next round.

  58. Jill Cox's Gravatar Jill Cox
    March 1, 2012 - 1:18 pm | Permalink

    After the devestating loss of Merton, I am taking a different path here.. Go Enmegahbowh!

  59. Alene's Gravatar Alene
    March 1, 2012 - 1:19 pm | Permalink

    I don’t need to know his words. The fact that his people considered him a healer is enough for me. Thomas has been a model for me since my teenage years, and I’m thinking he would approve a vote for John Johnson Enmegahbowh, the one who stands by his people.

  60. Mollie Douglas Turner+'s Gravatar Mollie Douglas Turner+
    March 1, 2012 - 1:24 pm | Permalink

    Thomas is a long-time favorite of mine, but Enmegahbowh–wow!

  61. Greta Getlein's Gravatar Greta Getlein
    March 1, 2012 - 1:25 pm | Permalink

    Well, well, well. I just need to say I think Thomas gets a bum rap as “coubter.” For me, he is more faithful than all the other disciples. His “let me touch you” is, I think, less about doubt and more about transformation. He knows he will be changed. Touching Jesus, for real like Thomas, or through the Eucharist, like us, is a perilous act. We will be transformed. Changed. In uncontrollable ways. Not a doubter; but a fearless man willing to be made into a new creature.

    All that aside, my vote still goes to Enmegahbowh for his courageous witness.

    • Greta Getlein's Gravatar Greta Getlein
      March 1, 2012 - 1:26 pm | Permalink

      woops. doubter.

    • Sarah R.'s Gravatar Sarah R.
      March 1, 2012 - 7:17 pm | Permalink

      Yes, yes! You had me in suspense there…I am so glad you are on team Enmegahbowh, but you would make an excellent PR rep for Thomas! 🙂

  62. zig's Gravatar zig
    March 1, 2012 - 1:34 pm | Permalink

    Oh Puleeze!! You are going to dis one of the Apostles? Jesus himself selected him fer cryin out loud! Underdog-voting is a hoot, but seriously . . .

  63. JT's Gravatar JT
    March 1, 2012 - 2:18 pm | Permalink

    I was ordained on the feast of Enmegahbowh. Prayed then as I do now to spread the Word with “…fiery zeal and gentle humility.” So he absolutely has my vote … and not “underdog-voting” here.

  64. Tarheel's Gravatar Tarheel
    March 1, 2012 - 2:20 pm | Permalink

    With the description of “A tower of strength, constancy, and patience” per Holcombe, Enmegahbowh has characteristics that speak to me. Plus, if you are looking for a “Cinderella” saint or basketball team these same characteristics will serve well.

  65. Tom Cox's Gravatar Tom Cox
    March 1, 2012 - 2:24 pm | Permalink

    After yesterday, we in the Thomas tribe are in danger of running out of favorite sons. Go Thomas!

  66. dr.primrose's Gravatar dr.primrose
    March 1, 2012 - 3:00 pm | Permalink

    For those who want to know more about Enmegahbowh’s life and ministry, there’s quite a bit of informtion the June 2002 issue of the Diocese of Minnesota newspaper, Soundings, that commemorated the 100th anniversary of his death –http://archive.episcopalchurch.org/documents/NAM_Enmegahbowh.pdf .

    The most entertaining story is his Job-on-the-ship-in-a-storm-on-the-way-to-Ninevah experience after he was discouraged after being abandoned by the Methodists but before he became an Episcopalian.

    • dr.primrose's Gravatar dr.primrose
      March 1, 2012 - 3:06 pm | Permalink

      He became an Episcopalian three months after his Job experience.

    • Christopher Nimmo's Gravatar Christopher Nimmo
      March 1, 2012 - 5:47 pm | Permalink

      JOB on his way to Nineveh? Don’t remember that one. Although I recall that my science teacher at high school did.

      • dr.primrose's Gravatar dr.primrose
        March 1, 2012 - 6:06 pm | Permalink

        Well, one of those J guys! (Mind in neutral and haste makes waste!)

    • Diane Amison-Loring's Gravatar Diane Amison-Loring
      March 1, 2012 - 9:42 pm | Permalink

      I was born and raised in Minnesota. My mother has a great love for Mrs. Whipple, Bishop Whipple’s wife, and still keeps a small statuette of her. I suspect Enmegahbowh’s wife and Mrs. Whipple may have been friends.

      Go Enmegahbowh!

  67. Karen McLeod's Gravatar Karen McLeod
    March 1, 2012 - 3:06 pm | Permalink

    None of the Apostles believed Mary when she first came rushing in to say that she had seen the Risen Lord! Why are they not considered doubters?? Thomas for me is the one determined to know the truth.

    • Jennifer's Gravatar Jennifer
      March 2, 2012 - 12:28 am | Permalink

      Good point!

  68. March 1, 2012 - 3:28 pm | Permalink

    My vote is for Thomas – one of my favourite apostles, who brings doubt into the complex picture of faith, who questions and who follows whole-heartedly. Glad to learn a little about Enmegahbowh. There are some amazing saints out there!

  69. Jim's Gravatar Jim
    March 1, 2012 - 3:30 pm | Permalink

    Thomas was one of the original disciples called by Jesus. He followed Jesus during Jesus’ ministry and continued on after the crucifixion, travelling far and wide, only to be martyred for his beliefs.

    Enmegahbowh undoubtedly did good works but in the big picture they fall short of those of Thomas. I agree that under-dog voting or creating cinderella teams is both fun and fine but let us give the martyred saint his due. Thomas all the way!

  70. Mic's Gravatar Mic
    March 1, 2012 - 4:13 pm | Permalink

    This isn’t a hats choice for me. Thomas is an Apostle, so that is a winner. Enmeagabow is a really good person too though. I already put Thomas on my bracket.

  71. Mic's Gravatar Mic
    March 1, 2012 - 4:14 pm | Permalink

    This isn’t a hard choice for me. Thomas is an Apostle, so that is a winner. Enmeagabow is a really good person too though. I already put Thomas on my bracket. Maybe next year I’ll go for Enmeagabow.

  72. Alice's Gravatar Alice
    March 1, 2012 - 4:17 pm | Permalink

    I still can’t believe that Merton is already out of the running. Where are the members of the International Thomas Merton Society when you need them? So I guess I am mostly voting for the underdogs.

  73. Virginia's Gravatar Virginia
    March 1, 2012 - 4:41 pm | Permalink

    ARGH, how do I choose?? Well its Enmegahbowh for me. No Thomas…. hmmm. :~)

  74. ~kim's Gravatar ~kim
    March 1, 2012 - 5:35 pm | Permalink

    EGADS! Where are all the Thomas supporters? We’re down by 19! I thought this was a shoe in for Team Thomas, but am beginning to have my doubts~!

    • Margaret Smist's Gravatar Margaret Smist
      March 1, 2012 - 7:08 pm | Permalink

      You better get all of your friends and family (assuming they will vote for Thomas) out to vote!

  75. Fr Bill Loring's Gravatar Fr Bill Loring
    March 1, 2012 - 5:46 pm | Permalink

    The icon for St. Thomas of India is great; but Enmegahbowh looks so wonderfully Anglican is his proper surplice that I just had to vote for him.

  76. Hope Van Beek's Gravatar Hope Van Beek
    March 1, 2012 - 7:06 pm | Permalink

    (daddy is typing for Hope): because he has the Golden Halo and he said “My Lord, My God.” He finally believed even while others doubted.

  77. March 1, 2012 - 7:31 pm | Permalink

    Hmm, tough choice, but I have always had a soft spot for St Thomas.

  78. Marguerite's Gravatar Marguerite
    March 1, 2012 - 7:42 pm | Permalink

    Cannot believe this contest is so close. Lent Madness is crazy. At this rate it will be anybody’s guess for the Golden Halo. Expecting someone to write in Ron Paul one of these brackets.

    If you haven’t already voted, may I suggest Thomas? Clearly anyone of the 32 on the bracket is going to be honorable, inspirational and worthy…but VOTE THOMAS.

  79. Mary-Elise's Gravatar Mary-Elise
    March 1, 2012 - 8:14 pm | Permalink

    It seems the voting population has a clear Midwest, anglican bias.
    I really thought Merton would win yesterday. I did pick Enmegahbawh.
    Next year I have to figure out how to start a pool in my church.

  80. Patty Reichert's Gravatar Patty Reichert
    March 1, 2012 - 8:26 pm | Permalink

    There was never a doubt who I was voting for, for various reasons I have often called my son,Tommy “Doubting Thomas” . So when I saw Thomas was a contender Enmegahbowh never has a chance to get my vote. Then I read his bio and had to think about it for the day. I have thought and I am going with my first thought. Doubting Thomas I will not doubt you again. My son has your name. I must support my son.

  81. March 1, 2012 - 8:59 pm | Permalink

    Apostle Thomas, the twin,
    Showed doubt, but that’s not a sin.
    When he saw, he was awed,
    Cried, “My Lord and my God!”
    And followed with faith ’til his end.

    Enmegahbowh, son of a chief,
    Was ordained an Episcopal priest,
    Courageous through strife,
    With his wonderful wife,
    Shares now in the Heavenly Feast.

    While I’m very happy to have learned about Enmegahbowh, I’m finally decided to vote with Thomas. Hard to beat one of the Twelve!

    • Ed Adcock's Gravatar Ed Adcock
      March 2, 2012 - 12:45 am | Permalink

      Tikimama,
      I’m going to start collecting your limericks. A little pocketbook for myself.
      I voted early for Enmegahbowh. At this time (11:38pm CST) seems to be called a tie: T @ 955, E @ 944.
      Wonder what the morning will bring?

      • March 2, 2012 - 12:53 am | Permalink

        Thanks, Ed! What a nice compliment 🙂 It’s another nail-biter, isn’t it?

        • March 2, 2012 - 12:54 am | Permalink

          Okay….
          Posted 9:53 PST (USA)

          • Ed Adcock's Gravatar Ed Adcock
            March 3, 2012 - 9:37 pm | Permalink

            Tikimama,
            Lent Madness dot Org is looking for a theme song (see 3/3/12 posting)! You write the words, I know a tune that every limerick fits. The refrain will have be fixed, of course. 😉
            Posted 2036 CST

  82. Marguerite's Gravatar Marguerite
    March 1, 2012 - 10:26 pm | Permalink

    C’mon Thomas. #votethomas

  83. Ed Adcock's Gravatar Ed Adcock
    March 2, 2012 - 12:52 am | Permalink

    Quick suggestion.
    Put YOUR time stamp on your comment. It appears Lent Madness is going global and what appears to be very late comments are just comments posted west of New York Standard Time.
    Posted 11:52 CST (USA)

  84. Christopher Nimmo's Gravatar Christopher Nimmo
    March 2, 2012 - 2:25 am | Permalink

    100 votes just disappeared! What is this foul magic?

    • March 2, 2012 - 2:48 am | Permalink

      Hi Christopher,

      Someone in Kansas (Overland Park, I think) voted over 100 times for Thomas. The first batch was 70+ votes, all within a couple of minutes. Then there was another batch of votes. After blocking that person, I removed 100 votes so that the results would more accurately reflect genuine votes.

      Sadly, there are people who resort to cheating in Lent Madness. The Supreme Executive Committee wants a clean competition. If people want to urge their neighbors or total strangers to vote en masses, that’s great. However, voting dozens or hundreds of times is not fair, and it’s not nice.

      So that’s why you saw 100 votes go away. Enmegahbowh is ahead, fair and square.

    • March 2, 2012 - 2:49 am | Permalink

      I was thinking we’d put up a blog post about this tomorrow, but I don’t want anyone to think there’s anything untoward happening at Lent Madness HQ. We’re just trying to keep things fair.

      Hope that helps.

    • Alister's Gravatar Alister
      March 2, 2012 - 2:49 am | Permalink

      I think the disappearance of votes is an Episcopalian ploy to see their man win. We should have tried that for our dear Bishop Patterson

  85. Ginny Rodriguez's Gravatar Ginny Rodriguez
    March 2, 2012 - 2:34 am | Permalink

    It has to be Thomas. His disbelief evaporated in the true presence of the risen Jesus. Thomas became a sort of light bulb for subsequent generations who were not present in that room, including Enmegahbowh. 11:30pm pst

  86. March 2, 2012 - 7:49 am | Permalink

    Overland Park, huh? Maybe some left-behind, disgruntled NCAA employee didn’t like Tim’s pilfering the whole bracket idea….

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