Daily Archives: 14 April 2006

Good Friday

ORATIOReminiscere miserationum tuarum, Domine,et famulos tuos aeterna protectione sanctifica,pro quibus Christus, Filius tuus,per suum cruorem instituit paschale mysterium. The rich and enlightening Lewis & Short Dictionary shows that cruor has a precise meaning: "Blood (which flows from a wound), a … Read More


What Does The Washing of Feet Really Say?

Each year there is recurring set of abuses of the people of God that take place during the Sacred Triduum.

First there is vile abuse of the people through illicit “general absolution”. That will need its own treatment. Second there is the silliness surrounding washing the feet of women during the Mass of Holy Thursday.

Finally tired of the blather about how “sexist” it is to wash only the feet of men, or how “meaningful” it is to wash the feet of females of any age, I figured it was time to give my explanation.

People get pretty emotional about this topic. Any priest who decides actually to obey the Church’s laws finds that he is being fried on the third rail. I know a few priests who have exercised their option not to have the rite at all because some angry women were carping at him about not being treated equally and there was no reasoning with them, no explanations possible.

However, it may also be possible that they really were not able to explain it clearly: they know the truth about this rite, but sometimes in the life of a busy pastor having a sense of something isn’t the same as theological clarity. They wind up unable to put thoughts into clear words.

Here is my explanation. Keep in mind I fully believe that just stating the law of the Church ought to be enough. Read More