Thursday 14 April 2022

Washing of feet


This week, many churches re-enact the story of Jesus washing the disciples’ feet before the Last Supper. The priest washes the feet of 12 people representing the disciples. You can bet that the chosen 12 have ensured that their feet are as clean as could be, to avoid embarrassment during the re-enactment.

At the time of Jesus, however, things were different. Streets were not as modern and clean as they are now in our towns and cities. They were dusty, muddy if it rained, and no doubt full of deposits from horses, camels and cattle. People wore sandals or even walked in bare feet.

So when they entered a house as guests washing their feet must have been an essential task rather than the symbolism it is in today’s churches. A task left to the servants to undertake.

When Jesus offered, insisted even, in washing His disciples’ feet He was teaching them, and us, a very important lesson.

Here is God Himself, born in poverty, raised in poverty, living in poverty, submitting Himself to perform a task reserved for servants.

Perhaps the disciples didn’t understand the significance of what Jesus had just done. Maybe we don’t understand it ourselves right now.

Yet, He was preparing for an even greater submission and humiliation for us.

Dying a most horrible and painful death on the Cross.

Just for us.


  1. In the Catholic Church, the ritual washing
    of feet is now associated with the Mass of
    the Lord's Supper, which celebrates in a
    special way the Last Supper of Jesus, before
    which he washed the feet of his twelve apostles...

    The foot-washing ceremony takes place on the
    Thursday before Easter in Christian tradition,
    and is meant to re-create Jesus Christ's washing
    the feet of the 12 disciples, highlighting his
    humility and love for all...

    And to think...
    Peter said, “You shall never wash my feet.”
    And..Jesus answered, “If I do not wash you,
    you have no part in me.” Amen!

    1. Amen Willie. Well said.

      God bless.

    2. Oh! Almost forgot..
      At weddings..Bride and Groom wash each others
      feet in a bowl with a sponge and dry them off
      with a towel...
      The reason some Christian couples decide to do
      this is because it is a symbol of being humble
      and willing to serve one another since that is
      what Jesus did for his disciples...!

  2. ...a practice that the Amish do.

  3. Yes, the ritual of washing the saints feet is still taught (but seldom practiced) in our church denomination today. And yes anyone taking part made sure their feet were CLEAN before taking part. As a kid I thought that was 'funny'.
    In part i certainly approve of your church's approach to that ceremony. Selecting 12 is a good idea. ;-)
    Thanks for the insight.

    1. It's a good ritual which reminds us of what Jesus went through in Holy Week.

      God bless you Jack and Sherry.

  4. PS: Of course everyone should realize the complete meaning, humility. A great characteristic of the Christian.

    1. Humility ... so lacking in the modern world. Humility is seen as a weakness these days. Thank you Jack.

      God bless you and your family.

  5. This practice wasn't performed when I was growing up and attending a Catholic school.

    1. It's practiced in some, but not all, Catholic churches.

      God bless you, Bill.

  6. Dearest Victor,
    Sure the meaning of washing feet back then is so different from our times.
    We never had this done at any Catholic Church we attended and only at an Episcopal Church here locally.

    1. It is practiced over here in our Catholic churches; don't know about other denominations. A reminder of Christ's Passion and death on the Cross.

      God bless, Mariette.

  7. It's so difficult to wrap my head around the image of Jesus washing His disciples feet, a task reserved for servants of the lowest degree. Just knowing the Lord of all humbled Himself in this menial way only makes me want to serve Him with all my heart, mind, soul, and strength.
    Blessings, Victor!

    1. Having served people throughout His life by healing the sick, raising the dead and comforting the lost, this was His last act of humility before offering His life for us all.

      God bless, Martha.

  8. As others have said, it's challenging to understand why Jesus chose to perform this act. To try and understand him at all! As usual, I'm humbled by the enormity of His love.

    1. I believe He did this to teach His disciples, and us, that to be a follower of His we too should serve others in love and humility.

      God bless you, Mevely.

  9. He came not to be served, but to serve, and He wants us to follow that example.

  10. I understand what others have said, he was teaching us that being humble is a good thing, but I don't get how the foot washing relates to preparing to be crucified. Did he know from the beginning what his ending would be?

    1. Thank you for a good question, River.

      Yes, Jesus knew all His life that He would die cruelly by Crucifixion. Jesus is a Spirit, (like God), and has always existed. He did not begin to exist when He was born as a baby on earth. As such, He knew His mission all His life. Can you imagine what it must have been like as a child, as a growing teenager, to know how He would die?

      His mission on earth was to reconcile us, with God. To meet humanity face to face, as a human Himself as well as being God, and to teach us about His Father, and our Father, in Heaven.

      Thank you again for your comment. God bless you.

  11. A friend of mine who attends the Catholic servies was selected as one of the 12 to wash the feet. He said it was quite humbling and he was grateful to do it. Happy Easter. Jesus suffered so tremendously and I never forget all He gave. The phsyical pain was horrible but the spiritual pain had to be worse. He had never been away from His Father. I am grateful for His sacfrifice but I think of that often and especially during the Easter season. God Bless You!

    1. It is so nice to see you visiting here, Anne. Thank you. Please call again soon and often and invite your friends.

      Indeed, Jesus suffered the physical pain as well as spiritually enduring detachment from God because of our sins. A sacrifice we should never forget and always be grateful for.

      Best wishes to you and yours. God bless.



God bless you.