Skip to main content

Whose Feet Did Pope Francis Really Wash? The Call to Return to Gospel Simplicity Comments

"Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon, "Do you see this woman? When I entered your house, you did not give me water for my feet, but she has bathed them with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You did not give me a kiss, but she has not ceased kissing my feet since the time I entered. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she anointed my feet with ointment. So I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven; hence, she has shown ... Continue Reading

11 - 20 of 24 Comments

  1. michael
    1 year ago

    You have done an excellent job, dear deacon, in helping many solid Catholics to cope with the actions of our Holy Father. Children of alcoholics will use similar coping mechanisms to deal with the dysfunction within their family…overlooking, enabling, denial, rationalizing, etc.. Will it take Pope Francis using wooden, porous chalices at Holy Mass…or him eating a T-bone steak on Good Friday before the children will speak up? As the supreme legislator and moderator, he can do such things. But don't you think it might cause a bit of scandal? So many good priests and good bishops have been holding the line on the Holy Thursday mandatum, yet this one act deflates them. It was this way with altar girls, too. So many held strong to liturgical tradition, and then Pope John Paul II approves female service at the altar calling it part of the "feminine genius." A reality check is needed, not further acts of denial. Be good, dear deacon, and make reparation for the actions of the pontiff.

  2. Patrick Hadley
    1 year ago

    There is a principle of English law that says: "De minimis non curat lex." usually translated as: "The law does not concern itself with trifles."

    Those who have made a mountain out off this molehill as if it were a major issue of the interpretation of Church Law seem to have lost all sense of proportion.

  3. DLL
    1 year ago

    Male or female,we go where our feet take us through our own free choice. Our feet can take us to a plane from Boston to SanFrancisco and then to another plane from San Francisco to Hawaii. This is the trip to a paradise on earth with sun,waves on the beautiful beaches and to stay at a beautiful resort area for the time of ones life. Our feet can take us to a prostitute or to an abortion clinic. Our feet take us along all sorts of vocational pathways. Good or evil or in ordinary ways we travel as able bodied people where ever our feet take us,because our will directs our bodies to be where ever our feet will take them in any given place or time. Washing the feet is for good hygiene but on a Holy Thursday it is a reminder that we must walk on Holy ground and in with Holy and renewed ways of living out our renewed and Holy lifestyles,in the love and service to God,as Christ Jesus did. Divine Mercy is directly advocated for all as,their feet must be washed by Christ so they may walk in in the ways of Christ,as all receive this wonderful Holy Spirit to help them along the right paths in our lifestyles. Christ is the way,the truth and the life. The Priest acts in the persona of Christ and helps all to understand the character of Christ as does the Pope,a priest of all Priests. Mercy is so no one remains a prisoner of sin. Forgiveness of sin sets all free of sin as long as they accept this newly acquired gift and vow to sin no more. Those in prison are serving a sentence as a result of their sins. They are paying the wage for sin,but the washing of the feet can make all followers of Christ,circumstances can not separate anyone from the love of God. God asks that we follow Christ as if we were always walking on Holy Ground,now alive through the power of the Holy Spirit,alive again,not dead in sin,that sad wage all pay for a life of sin. The sad wage for sin is death. God is love and life is now and the eternal,love that never dies.

  4. mpope
    1 year ago

    you saw him giving stamp of approval for pagans.
    i saw him showing love to persons.

    you saw him breaking liturgical rules.
    i saw him loving BEYOND the rules-- in much the same way Jesus loved beyond the law when he healed on the sabbath, "This daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound for eighteen years now, ought she not to have been set free on the sabbath day from this bondage?”

    it appears that most of us see him as a great challenge to, specifically, the faithful, practicing Catholic.
    perhaps you see this as a bad thing.
    i see it as a difficult, but necessary and good thing.

  5. KarlVDH
    1 year ago

    Jose... something to consider is that while the apostles were all certainly men, all but one of them ran away, denied Christ, or betrayed him at the moment of truth... only one out of twelve men proved he had a true heart for Christ. Meanwhile, the women never left him. In fact, the first human being in the history of the world to proclaim and preach a risen Christ was, in fact, a woman.
    It would also behoove us to remember that while Jesus entrusted His Church to those flawed men, it wasn't one of them, but rather a young deacon, Stephen, who ended up as the first sainted Martyr.
    Perhaps our penchant for placing importance on rank and gender is missing the point. Jesus knows what he's doing. So, I suspect and trust, does our Holy Father.

  6. Jose Thomas
    1 year ago

    These lead to many theological questions. Why God is father. Why God is son. Why God came as a male to offer His life on the cross. why Jesus included only males in His list of apostles, and ultimately it will lead to confusing the faithful. Of course the service rendered by Jesus is not only for male but for the female and of course if there is a deviant gender for them also. If the washing of feet is taken as an example of service there is nothing wrong in washing the feet of woman. However then it should not have been restricted to 12 in number as it will give rise to a different connotation. After all in discussions in secular media when ever a conclave is being conducted, will be whether the new pope will be a supporter of abortion, whether he is a promoter of abortion, particularly in the context of AIDS, whether he is a supporter of same sex marraige, women's ordination, whether he is a believer in evolution, in socialism, communism etc. And perhaps the secular world wants to extinguish the church and its doctrine. Actually traditionalists and experimentalists are quoting Bible to their advantage and either forget or pretend to forget the other messages that does not suit them. Jesus is Lord and during his life on earth as a human being, he confirmed his authority through testimonies and miracles. Something is wrong somewhere. We are really failing to be compassionate and kind. We can atleast do so, if we cannot do miracles as Jesus did.

  7. Kathryn
    1 year ago

    The rubric exists for serious reasons and has real meaning; it is not just a symbol. However, the Holy Father, as the pope, had the authority to change the way he celebrated this rubric. Do others? No. Just as it is necessary for us the faithful to accept in obedience what the Holy Father does, it is necessary for us to understand why the rubric exists and its meaning and importance. It is intimately connnected with the priesthood on three levels: the continuation of the Holy Eucharist, the priesthood itself and its meaning of service by the leaders in the Church rather than power-holding in the Church, and then the authority to pass on this power to others. The Holy Father was clearly emphasizing the service aspect in humility, however the intimate connection to the ordained priesthood is something that the faithful should remember and understand.

  8. Emma
    1 year ago

    @Darth can't be serious! By scandal, are you referring to the same scandal that Jesus created when he associated with the outcasts, the unclean, the tax collectors and the prostitutes who were barred from temple worship? That scandal? Then good for Pope Francis! It's about time!!

  9. Jcnkc09
    1 year ago

    The outside world may very well see it as scandal but the popes actions will at least spark conversation amongst the unbelievers which may ,for as many as pssible, lead to a correct understanding of why he did what he did. Unbelievers will yell scandal and attack the church for many things because it is the shining beacon of hope carrying the hope faith and love that jesus brought to the world ,so it will get attacked all the time. That does not mean that the pope or any believer should only do what unbelievers will not attack for then we do no good for the world. we would be doing of the world.

  10. KarlVDH
    1 year ago

    Darth... who did Jesus touch while the Pharisees and "religious" people condemned him? Samaritans. Sinners. Whores. The diseased. The corrupt. When Jesus ate at the home of Zaccheus, was he endorsing corruption and in government, or elevating the sinner to something better?
    ...seriously? People are worried about who's washing who's feet, where the women are, and other such nonsense when his Holiness is going about rooting out the financial and sexual scandals that have made our Church appear like a whore to the rest of the world? For real? you'd put "tradition" above human beings, you'd castigate a man for demonstrating his humility? Perhaps you missed the point of his example. In point of fact, when a woman took it upon herself to wash Christ's feet, the objector- based on his understanding of tradition- was none other than Judas Iscariot. When Jesus changed other traditions based on the principle that "the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath," and demonstrated that the SPIRIT of the law is ALWAYS more important that strict observance of the LETTER of the law, his vocal critics were the Pharisees, and the Saducees.
    You suit yourself, but I choose to stand with His holiness next to Christ. anyone who chooses to stand over there on the side of blind observance to tradition- with the Pharisees and good old Judas... well, you might want to think about what the Pope's actions actually MEAN before you put yourself in the position of being his judge. Follow his example. Viva Papa!!

Leave a Comment

Comments submitted must be civil, remain on-topic and not violate any laws including copyright. We reserve the right to delete any comments which are abusive, inappropriate or not constructive to the discussion.

Though we invite robust discussion, we reserve the right to not publish any comment which denigrates the human person, undermines marriage and the family, or advocates for positions which openly oppose the teaching of the Catholic Church.

This is a supervised forum and the Editors of Catholic Online retain the right to direct it.

We also reserve the right to block any commenter for repeated violations. Your email address is required to post, but it will not be published on the site.

We ask that you NOT post your comment more than once. Catholic Online is growing and our ability to review all comments sometimes results in a delay in their publication.

Send me important information from Catholic Online and it's partners. See Sample

Post Comment

Newsletter Sign Up

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ezekiel 18:21-28
'If the wicked, however, renounces all the sins he has ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 130:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8
[Song of Ascents] From the depths I call to you, Yahweh: Lord, ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 5:20-26
'For I tell you, if your uprightness does not surpass that of ... Read More

Saint of the Day

February 27 Saint of the Day

St. Leander of Seville
February 27: St. Leander of Seville, Bishop (Feast - February 27th) Leander ... Read More