Skip to comments.Wisconsin bishop enforces ban on washing feet of women on Holy Thursday
Posted on 03/31/2014 4:43:43 AM PDT by NYer
It’s unusual to see something like this in a secular paper, but a reader spotted this in the Madison State Journal:
Just a few weeks after his election last spring, Pope Francis stunned papal observers by washing the feet of two women during a Holy Week ritual.
The rite on Maundy Thursday, just prior to Easter Sunday re-enacts Jesus washing of the feet of his 12 male disciples at his Last Supper. Traditionally, popes washed the feet only of men.
Catholic traditionalists believe the men-only rule should remain at least for everyone below the pope and many canon lawyers say church law agrees with that position. However, some dioceses in this country had begun including women long before the popes example, and a statement on the website for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops says that to include women is an understandable way of accentuating the evangelical command of the Lord.
Three years ago, Madison Catholic Bishop Robert Morlino issued guidelines that gave priests the option of either using only men or not celebrating the ritual at all. Given the heightened attention to foot-washing last year, some parishioners thought Morlino might re-evaluate his position.
That has not happened. Brent King, the diocesan spokesman, said priests have the same two options this year men-only or no ritual. Holy Thursday Mass falls on April 17. Easter is April 20.
As has become his tradition, Morlino will celebrate Holy Thursday Mass at St. Patricks Catholic Church in Downtown Madison, King said, where he will wash the feet of 12 seminarians.
Last year, at least two priests at Our Lady Queen of Peace in Madison and Nativity of Mary in Janesville took a pass on the ritual due to the male-only rule.
Problem though is that, with few exceptions such as this, it will be hardly enforced and with what Pope Francis did last year, it could very well be rendered impossible.
PS: Congrats to the WI me going to the Final Four!
Heterosexual priests cannot be washing womwns feet.
I cannot believe any priest would be tortured with burning concupiscence upon tactile contact with my calloused heels.
the whole foot washing thing has gotten so out of hand some places, it’s a distraction from the Maundy Thursday Mass.
This one Parish, I have reluctantly attended goes through the entire Church with buckets to wash anyone who wants their feet washed. It takes longer than Communion.
Same here. Happy to be able to walk still with my feet. Right now snowing in my area of the woods. Will spring ever come?!
We came within seconds of having three Big Ten teams in the final four.
And Morlino's response to such a protest would be what?
"The Pope was wrong to do such a thing"?? "I don't pay attention to what the Pope does"??
There is no reasonable response which does not either denigrate the Pope or imply that he may be ignored.
How does a bishop actually feel when he sees the Pope acting contrary to the bishop's own guidelines?
You got it.
It must be hard today for the folks in MI to deal with two MI teams going down in one day’s time.
That Bishop is simply in a no-win situation, that is all.
All due respect, and lack of grooming aside, we always like to err on the side of caution and remember that priests are men.
He must know that the Pope does not have his back on this one. That's a sad situation for a bishop who loves and honors the tradition of the Church.
God bless Bishop Robert Morlino!
Morlino is following Scripture. May other Bishops follow suit.
LOL. I doubt that ANY priest would have ANY feelings beyond what is normal. The seminaries screen better these days--after the debacle of the "sex and altar boys" scandal some years ago.
Washing of the feet.
What is sad, REALLY sad, is the WOMEN complaining about the maleness of the feet washing.
Our parish did both genders of feet washing for years. Now, it does neither.
WHY would I care? The rituals established by Jesus are JUST FINE BY ME.
That is why we pray for our priests.
So, in the end he must do what HIS boss says he must do.
I'm sure the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has an answer for him.
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