“The Cross was the manifestation of Divine love without reserve or limit; but it was also the expression of man’s unutterable malignity.” -Sir Robert Anderson
Foot Washing Services are for Today
Foot washing was an example Jesus set for us to follow. Jesus said, “If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you” (John 13:14-15). Unlike in Jesus’ day, ceremonial foot washing is not for cleaning feet, but is a spiritually significant act.
Foot Washing is a Sign of Humility
The roads were very dusty in Jesus’ day and it was the job of the lowliest of slaves to wash the feet of those coming in from a journey. Jesus was setting an example of humility in washing His disciple’s feet. The creator humbled Himself before His creation.
In a foot washing service we humble ourselves before a fellow brother or sister in Christ. In Philippians 2:3 and 5 Paul said, “In lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.”
Foot Washing Sets an Example of ServanthoodRead More »
The word “Maundy” is derived from the Latin word mandatum, or “mandate.”
This word is used in the Latin text for John 13:34:
“Mandatum novum do vobis ut diligatis invicem sicut dilexi vos.”
Or, in English:
“A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you.”
Holy Thursday is thus sometimes called Maundy Thursday because it was on this day that Christ gave us the new commandment–the new mandate–to love one another as he loves us.
1 Draw nigh to thy Jerusalem,
O Lord, thy faithful people cry with one accord:
ride on in triumph; Lord, behold,
we lay our passions, lusts, and proud wills in thy way.
2 Thy road is ready, and thy paths,
made straight, with longing expectations seem to wait
the consecration of thy beauteous feet,
and silently thy promised advent greet.
3 Hosanna! welcome to our hearts,
for here thou hast a temple too, as Zion dear;
yes, dear as Zion, and as full of sin;
how long shall theives and robbers dwell therein?
4 Enter and chase them forth,
and cleanse the floor; o’erthrow them all, that they
may nevermore profane with traffic vile that holy place
where thou hast chosen, Lord, to set thy face.
5 And then, if our stiff tongues shall faithlessly
be mute in praises of thy deity,
the very temple stones shall loud repeat
Hosanna! and thy glorious footsteps greet.
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Oyo state Branch, on Sunday urged Christians to take advantage of the significance of Palm Sunday to imbibe the culture of living a life of sacrifice.
“When Jesus entered the city of Jerusalem on what we commemorate as Palm Sunday, His entry was in fulfillment of the prophecy of Zechariah; He is victorious, triumphant, riding on a donkey.
“We should pray for divine strength, learn to love unconditionally, just like Jesus, we should always allow God’s will to be done in our lives, we should love, be strong even when the going is rough and shouldn’t be Palm Sunday Christians by mouth,” he said.
Okoye said that it showed the humble, peaceful nature of Jesus riding on a donkey as a king rather than a warhorse; it showed that Jesus is a burden bearer as He rode on a donkey (a beast of burden).
With this entrance into Holy Week, the Pope explained, “Jesus shows us how to face moments of difficulty and the most insidious of temptations by preserving in our hearts a peace that is neither detachment nor superhuman impassivity, but confident abandonment to the Father and to his saving will, which bestows life and mercy.”
Today, too, remarked the Pontiff, “by his entrance into Jerusalem, he shows us the way. For in that event, the evil one, the prince of this world, had a card up his sleeve: the card of triumphalism. Yet, the Lord responded by holding fast to his own way, the way of humility.”
The Pope emphasized that “triumphalism tries to make it to the goal by shortcuts and false compromises… It lives off gestures and words that are not forged in the crucible of the cross; Jesus destroyed triumphalism by his Passion.” “One subtle form of triumphalism is spiritual worldliness, which represents the greatest danger, the most treacherous temptation threatening the Church”, he said, quoting from French Cardinal and Theologian Henri De Lubac.
A remarkable, spontaneous gesture. Breaking protocol, at the conclusion of his remarks at the end of the spiritual retreat, Pope Francis fell to his knees, kissing the feet of South Sudan’s civil authorities.
“To the three of you who signed the Peace Agreement, I ask you, as a brother, remain in peace”, the Pope said. “I ask you from the heart. Let us move forward. There will be many problems, but don’t be afraid, go forward, resolve the problems”. In impromptu remarks following his address, Pope Francis said, “You have started a process; may it end well.
Although struggles will arise, he said, these should stay “within the office”. However in public, he said, “before the people: [keep your] hands united”. In this way, the Pope said, “from simple citizens, you will become Fathers of the Nation”.
In his prepared remarks, the Holy Father reflected on “the gaze of God”, and “the gaze of the people”. He began his address with the words used by the risen Lord to greet his “disconsolate disciples”, following the resurrection: “Peace be with you!”
“Peace is the first gift that the Lord brought us”, he said, “and the first commitment that leaders of nations must pursue. Peace is the fundamental condition for ensuring the rights of each individual and the integral development of an entire people”.