Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Friday 30 July |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Solanus Casey
home iconSpirituality
line break icon

(Video) Pope Washes Feet of Prisoners on Holy Thursday

Diane Montagna - published on 04/02/15

And even the foot of one toddler

ROME — In what has become known as a hallmark of his pastoral style, Pope Francis again celebrated the Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord’s Supper at a Roman prison, where he washed the feet of 12 inmates, including men and women from Brazil, Congo, Ecuador, Italy and Nigeria. The inmates included one mother holding her small child — whose little foot the Pope also washed and kissed.

The Mass was celebrated in the chapel of Rome’s Rebibbia prison on the outskirts of Rome. Rebibbia is famed as the place where Pope St. John Paul II in 1983 visited his attempted assassin, Mehmet Ali Agca, to forgive him. As providence would have it, this year Holy Thursday fell on the 10th anniversary of the death of Pope St. John Paul II.

In unprepared remarks to 300 inmates, Pope Francis reflected the beginning of St. John’s Passion narrative: “Having loved his own who were in the the world, he loved them to the end.”

“The first thing I wish to tell you, is that Jesus loves you ‘to the end’, Pope Francis said. “Jesus loved us, he loves us, without limits, to the end, to the point of giving his life for us, for each one of us.”

He continued: “In the Bible, there is a passage in the Prophet Isaiah which is so beautiful: can a mother forget her child? Even if a mother were to forget her child, I will never forget you’. This is the nature of God’s love for us.” 

Before kneeling before the 12 detainees to wash their feet, Pope Francis made a request:

“Today,” he said, “I will wash the feet of 12 of you, but in these brothers and sisters you are all present: everyone, everyone. All those who live here. But I also need to be cleansed by the Lord, and so prayer during this Mass that the Lord wash my impurities, that I may become more of a servant to you, more of a servant in the service of the people, as Jesus was.”

Tags:
Pope Francis
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
1
HIDILYN DIAZ
Cerith Gardiner
Gold-winning Filipina Olympian shares her Miraculous Medal for th...
2
SIMONE BILES
Cerith Gardiner
Simone Biles leaves the Olympics with an important lesson for her...
3
Zelda Caldwell
World-record winning gymnast Simone Biles leans on her Catholic f...
4
ORGAN
J-P Mauro
Reconstructing a 12th-century pipe organ discovered in the Holy L...
5
PRINCESS DIANA AND MOTHER TERESA
Mathilde De Robien
Did you know Princess Di was buried with a rosary?
6
Zelda Caldwell
German women’s gymnastics teams modest dress protests sport’s ...
7
Lauren Daigle
J-P Mauro
After 3 years Lauren Daigle ousts herself from #1 Billboard spot
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.