Video: Pope Francis breaks with Maundy Thursday tradition, will wash feet of prisoners

posted at 12:41 pm on March 28, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

For Christians around the world, Holy Week observances begin in earnest today, as the Last Supper is commemorated in the run-up to Easter.  For many Christian communities, including the Catholic Church, churches celebrate Maundy Thursday (also called Holy Thursday) by washing the feet of other congregants in evening celebrations, just as the New Testament depicts Jesus doing for his disciples before his arrest later that night.  Traditionally, the Catholic pontiff will wash the feet of twelve retired priests in St. Peter’s Basilica, but as we are discovering, Pope Francis is anything but a traditional pontiff.  CNN’s Ben Wedeman reports on Francis’ decision to extend his pastoral care to prisoners on Maundy Thursday:

Wedeman mentions that Francis has decided not to live in the normal papal apartments, which have been exclusive for pontifical use since 1906. Instead, he’s staying at the Domus Sancta Marthae, the hotel on Vatican grounds where the cardinals stayed during the conclave, although he uses the apartments for his duties. However, as the Vatican press office says, don’t read too much into that decision:

Pope Francis has decided not to move into the papal apartment used by Benedict XVI and others before him, preferring instead to stay in a simple suite at a Vatican hotel, a Vatican spokesman said.

The papal apartment on the top floor of the Apostolic Palace is ready for the new pontiff to move into, the Rev. Federico Lombardi told CNN on Tuesday.

However, he has decided to stay at the Casa Santa Marta, the residence where he’s been staying since the papal election two weeks ago, for the time being, Lombardi said.

He’s given no date for when he might move out of the two-room suite, Lombardi added.

The Anchoress added a few thoughts about the reaction to Francis’ decision on living arrangements:

The pope is still the pope, whether he uses the papal apartments or not; whether he calls himself the Bishop of Rome or not. Peter is still Peter whether he is on the throne or walking amongst those who need the healing grace of his shadow.

Benedict saw a Curia — and a church — in serious trouble; like a boxer pinned too long in a corner by a world bent on destruction, he understood that if the church was going to survive she needed to get back into the corner for some refreshment and restoration, and then come out swinging. He rang the bell and gave the church that chance.

Practically from the moment he appeared on the balcony of St. Peter’s, gazing with remarkable placidity upon the throng before him, it has been clear that this pope is a spiritual brawler — to the world, a quiet menace, because a spiritual brawler will smile and offer you nothing but ferocious tenderness, the kind that will impact, repeatedly, on the solar plexus, until we are breathless and ready for mercy. The world needs precisely this sort of pummeling — anything besides tenderness, and its guard would be forever up. As I have said before, everyone in turn, and in varying measures, is going to find something to love about Francis and something to be bugged by; we’re all going to be challenged out of our comfort zones.

Stop worrying, and watch. It’s going to be fascinating. Nothing Francis is doing is in any way going to change who and what Peter is; in fact, he is going to help clarify to the world exactly who Peter is — the man around whom the Office was created, and who has been, perhaps, too encumbered by some of its walls. Before he ever had a mitre or a staff, he walked among the crowds and took counsel with other apostles. This particular iteration of Peter may actually be the one under whom the unifying work of Benedict may actually blossom into something solid and lasting. In that case, there is a good chance Peter will want to create a council that includes reps from every continent and from Orthodoxy. Be ready for that.

But he will still be Peter; still the Vicar of Christ and the keeper of the Keys.

Let me put it in simpler terms.  Pope Francis is taking himself out of the comfort zone … and challenging us to get out of ours, as well. That’s what a good pastor does with his congregation, and Pope Francis is focused on setting a pastoral example, for Catholics and everyone else, too.


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Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.

Hebrews 13:3

CurtZHP on March 28, 2013 at 12:44 PM

3..2..1,liberal heads explode! Wait til he comes out firmly against gay marriage and abortion.

Tater Salad on March 28, 2013 at 12:45 PM

Forget it! People are in prisons for a reason.

Blake on March 28, 2013 at 12:48 PM

Forget it! People are in prisons for a reason.

Blake on March 28, 2013 at 12:48 PM

The traditional enumeration of the corporal works of mercy is as follows:

To feed the hungry;
To give drink to the thirsty;
To clothe the naked;
To harbour the harbourless;
To visit the sick;
To ransom the captive;
To bury the dead.

The spiritual works of mercy are:

To instruct the ignorant;
To counsel the doubtful;
To admonish sinners;
To bear wrongs patiently;
To forgive offences willingly;
To comfort the afflicted;
To pray for the living and the dead.

steebo77 on March 28, 2013 at 12:53 PM

Forget it! People are in prisons for a reason.

Blake on March 28, 2013 at 12:48 PM

But they are still God’s children.

Trafalgar on March 28, 2013 at 12:53 PM

I really like this Pope.

He is going to be a great ambassador for not only the Catholic faith but for Christianity in general.

gophergirl on March 28, 2013 at 12:54 PM

Pope Francis is taking himself out of the comfort zone … and challenging us to get out of ours, as well. That’s what a good pastor does with his congregation, and Pope Francis is focused on setting a pastoral example, for Catholics and everyone else, too.

Wow.

This is leadership. This is a servant leader. What a great example. Jesus would’ve done it too. Wow.

ted c on March 28, 2013 at 12:54 PM

The Pope is really playing up his social-justice street cred. He had lots before, but he is smart enough to know that among Catholics, most of whom live in poor countries, the “poor man’s Pope” angle will play well, especially in Italy where unemployment and resentment of the rich has always been high post WWII.

keep the change on March 28, 2013 at 12:55 PM

I don’t agree with him on everything obviously but I am liking this public image he’s presenting for the Papacy. The best part is that this seems to be genuine and not for PR.

JohnAGJ on March 28, 2013 at 12:55 PM

an act of mercy.

how rare is that these days?? A gift of grace. Rather than giving them what they deserve (justice), he gives them what they need (mercy).

That’s a new testament example of servant leadership.

wow.

ted c on March 28, 2013 at 12:56 PM

3..2..1,liberal heads explode! Wait til he comes out firmly against gay marriage and abortion.

Tater Salad on March 28, 2013 at 12:45 PM

He doesn’t need to. The Church has always been firmly against gay marriage and abortion. Nothing has changed, nor will it.

Trafalgar on March 28, 2013 at 12:58 PM

Now I would call that an Imitation of Christ.

fourdeucer on March 28, 2013 at 12:59 PM

But, will he wash the feet of the Falkland Islanders?

besser tot als rot on March 28, 2013 at 1:01 PM

Pope Francis is taking himself out of the comfort zone … and challenging us to get out of ours, as well. That’s what a good pastor does with his congregation, and Pope Francis is focused on setting a pastoral example, for Catholics and everyone else, too.

I’ve got to disagree slightly (if the press reports are true). This seems to be Pope Francis very much staying in HIS comfort zone because this is precisely what he was doing as a cardinal including eschewing the residence for simpler accomodation where he even cooked his own dinner. Staying on at Casa Santa Marta and washing prisoner’s feet instead of a selected twelve retired priests in the Vatican seems to be Pope Francis being who he has always been. And I admire him for it.

That being said, I’ve got to wonder how this arrangement will work in the long-run. Surely this humble way of living is actually causing some additional work for those on his immediate staff. I think that in the end there will be some sort of a balance between living the life of a simple cardinal and the regal trappings of the Papacy. But, in the meantime, I think the Pope is breathing new life into an organization that is in many ways a moribund institution devoid of real faith or energy.

And thanks to God for Pope Benedict XVI’s courage in making the decision to step down. Perhaps the single-most important bit of stewardship in decades.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:03 PM

Unbunch your panties…..
If you have been watching your Bible series……. back in the day, prisoner could often mean religious persecution or falsely incarcerated by the man for not being obedient to a custom or to injurious law. Innocent people held against their will, for no real crime at all. Slavery, yes even slavery, was acceptable back in those days.

And Jesus died with criminals on each side of him.

Repentance would be the word of the day.

(Except for the truly evil scumbags that we have come to know as our modern day prisoners who are guilty and need to go to Hell.)

FlaMurph on March 28, 2013 at 1:06 PM

I’m as cynical as the next guy, but I really, truly believe that Francis wants to live his life according to the holy examples of Jesus Christ and Saint Francis.

I don’t think he has a political bone in his body. His experience in Argentina shows that, where he was marginalized and shunted aside by the powers that be for quite a long time. He just knows what is right and will bear witness to that truth.

NavyMustang on March 28, 2013 at 1:08 PM

I really like this Pope.

He is going to be a great ambassador for not only the Catholic faith but for Christianity in general.

gophergirl on March 28, 2013 at 12:54

As an Orthodox Christian, I’m impressed.

freedomfirst on March 28, 2013 at 1:09 PM

When I heard about him celebrating the Lord’s Supper Mass at the juvenile prison, I was touched. Generally, the Pope’s Maundy Thursday Mass is celebrated at St John Latern’s and all the important Italians attend. Papa Francisco is essentially saying that he considers some juvenile offenders in Rome more important than the President of Italy. And these are likely poor kids who have been abused by society and their own families. I hope that this is a new Holy Thursday tradition that is being imported from Buenos Aires. ;)

As for the housing situation, it strikes me as something to maintain Bergoglio’s personal sanity. The guy clearly got into the business because he loves people. An extreme extrovert isn’t going to react well to an isolated existence. Plus, if you think that the Curia is made up of careerist and narcissists, then you might want to find a way to prevent them from restricting access and information to you.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 1:12 PM

Imagine the prisoners receiving this blessing? This love? This undeniable act of humility and kindness? What a tremendous act of love and leadership.

redmama on March 28, 2013 at 1:13 PM

Nearly Buddha-like

DarkCurrent on March 28, 2013 at 1:22 PM

humility.

ted c on March 28, 2013 at 1:23 PM

Now I would call that an Imitation of Christ.

fourdeucer on March 28, 2013 at 12:59 PM

I know that “Imitation of Christ” is a perfectly acceptable phrase but, for some reason, it has always bugged me. How can anyone imitate the son of God?

But yes, Pope Francis is clearly demonstrating the kind of humility that Christ showed when he washed the feet of His disciples.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:24 PM

Ed, I thought “Maundy Thursday” was a Protestant term. I’ve been in the Church for 16 years, and I’ve always heard it called Holy Thursday. And yes, we’ll be at Mass tonight, and back for the veneration of the Cross tomorrow night.

Ward Cleaver on March 28, 2013 at 1:29 PM

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:24 PM

All Christians strive to imitate Christ, for Christ never did anything he did not tell us to do also.

The Lord’s Prayer is a great case in point.

unclesmrgol on March 28, 2013 at 1:32 PM

Generally, the Pope’s Maundy Thursday Mass is celebrated at St John Latern’s and all the important Italians attend.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 1:12 PM

Likewise with the foot washing. I’m sure it would be quite the honor to be one of the 12 retired priests selected for the proceedings. And that is what is wrong. Maundy Thursday Mass should not be celebrated as an event that you want to be seen at. There is far more humility in washing the feet of prisoners than retired priests.

I find myself during this Holy Week in greater self-reflection and consideration as to what Christ’s message is to us in 2013. I would suggest that Pope Francis provided at least a partial answer by his actions.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:32 PM

But they are still God’s children.

Trafalgar on March 28, 2013 at 12:53 PM

Then let God comfort them. Spend your time comforting the ones who were injured or devastated by the sweet innocent jailbirds. By comforting those in jail, you are giving the message that they can kill, maim, rob, rape, defraud, steel all they want, you will still comfort them and TS to their victims.

We have the greatest judicial system in history to minimize the conviction of the innocent, though a few still fall through the cracks. That is a far cry from the justice systems of 2 – 3 thousand years ago. Of course doing it, makes the librul hearts beat faster thinking they are doing something important.

Old Country Boy on March 28, 2013 at 1:33 PM

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:24 PM

Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children.

Ephesians 5:1.

CurtZHP on March 28, 2013 at 1:35 PM

All Christians strive to imitate Christ, for Christ never did anything he did not tell us to do also.

The Lord’s Prayer is a great case in point.

unclesmrgol on March 28, 2013 at 1:32 PM

As I said, I know there isn’t anything wrong with the word “imitate” but I think that in modern usage it almost has the connotation of mockery.

I much prefer a term like reflection of Christ.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:35 PM

Pope Francis staying true to his Jesuit roots and eschewing the trappings of power and privilege. I may not agree with him on everything he’s said in the past…but I have nothing but the utmost respect for Francis and much faith in his positive influence on The Church, on Catholics, and ultimately on the whole world.

We are truly blessed to have him.

JetBoy on March 28, 2013 at 1:36 PM

Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children.

Ephesians 5:1.

CurtZHP on March 28, 2013 at 1:35 PM

The context there for imitators is the same as saying be followers of God.

But as I posted above I think that, in 2013, imitate has taken on a connotation of mockery.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:39 PM

Then let God comfort them. Spend your time comforting the ones who were injured or devastated by the sweet innocent jailbirds. By comforting those in jail, you are giving the message that they can kill, maim, rob, rape, defraud, steel all they want, you will still comfort them and TS to their victims.

Old Country Boy on March 28, 2013 at 1:33 PM

We are called to imitate Christ. He ministered to tax collectors (thieves), usurers, prostitutes, adulterers, and all kinds of sinners. When your primary mission is the salvation of souls, as is the Pope’s, it is your spiritual duty to reach out to those most in need of God’s grace.

steebo77 on March 28, 2013 at 1:40 PM

Forget it! People are in prisons for a reason.

Blake on March 28, 2013 at 12:48 PM

And the state is doing what the state does for those prisoners, which is enforce justice.

Francis is doing what a priest does for prisoners, which is to minister and offer the opportunity for repentance and reform.

Furthermore he’s doing so at a juvenile detention center. For those thinking more practically than spiritually, it’s a worthy point that he addresses the youth, probably in for drugs and small-time theft for whom this simple act of mercy could be the motivation to commit to a good, lawful life.

Gingotts on March 28, 2013 at 1:40 PM

I much prefer a term like reflection of Christ.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:35 PM

Thomas à Kempis will agree to disagree.

steebo77 on March 28, 2013 at 1:43 PM

in 2013, imitate has taken on a connotation of mockery.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:39 PM

Because our post-modern culture has elected to cynically deconstruct anything and everything moral and principled. We choose not to participate.

CurtZHP on March 28, 2013 at 1:44 PM

Really like what he is doing….BUT…I worry about his security. Some followers of the “Religion of Peace” would like nothing more than taking him out.

Dingbat63 on March 28, 2013 at 1:45 PM

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:24 PM

You also display an Imitation of Christ in your respectful, thoughtful responses to those you disagree with even when you sometimes restrict yourself to using acceptable language that doesn’t result in you losing commenting privileges. We can only imitate to the degree our humble human talents and our personal limitations restrict us but even in the smallest most unnoticed way we do without awareness because I believe it is in our God given nature to imitate the highest, purest Being.

fourdeucer on March 28, 2013 at 1:45 PM

Because our post-modern culture has elected to cynically deconstruct anything and everything moral and principled. We choose not to participate.

CurtZHP on March 28, 2013 at 1:44 PM

Well Stated.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:48 PM

Forget it! People are in prisons for a reason.

Blake on March 28, 2013 at 12:48 PM

And the state is doing what the state does for those prisoners, which is enforce justice.

Francis is doing what a priest does for prisoners, which is to minister and offer the opportunity for repentance and reform.

Gingotts on March 28, 2013 at 1:40 PM

I’m immediately reminded of Luke 23:39-43…

One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!” But the other answered, and rebuking him said, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? “And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”

JetBoy on March 28, 2013 at 1:49 PM

I worry about his security. Some followers of the “Religion of Peace” would like nothing more than taking him out.

Dingbat63 on March 28, 2013 at 1:45 PM

I’m all over the place about this issue. Yes this is the Pope and security is an issue. But how does a priest, even the leader of the faith, do his job from behind a plexiglass bubble?

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:59 PM

Likewise with the foot washing. I’m sure it would be quite the honor to be one of the 12 retired priests selected for the proceedings. And that is what is wrong. Maundy Thursday Mass should not be celebrated as an event that you want to be seen at. There is far more humility in washing the feet of prisoners than retired priests.

Hopefully, this keeps up for however long we’ve got with our very special new Pope and that it becomes expected that his successor continue it. I’m fine with the dramatic new style; I just hope that he doesn’t take unnecessary risks with his security.

I find myself during this Holy Week in greater self-reflection and consideration as to what Christ’s message is to us in 2013. I would suggest that Pope Francis provided at least a partial answer by his actions.

I’ve really fallen away from the Church in quite a few years due to some unfortunate personal experiences with local parishes and Catholic schools. But Papa Francisco has really inspired me to attend Mass on a regular basis and become more active in the Church again. I’m thirty-one so I don’t really remember much of JP II before he became ill. (My parents took me to Rome over Christmas Break for my 16th B-day and we got to see JPII’s Vespers ceremony. He looked old and sick even in the late 1990s.) I’ve never felt so personally connected to a pope before and I don’t mind being challenged by him at all.

And thanks to God for Pope Benedict XVI’s courage in making the decision to step down. Perhaps the single-most important bit of stewardship in decades.

Yes, I’ve been thinking that only a traditionalist like B16 could have made that decision. And it was really needed. I’ve been reading John Thavis’ Vatican Diaries and it is striking how much the Church suffered during JPII’s final years because nobody was in charge. Also, the decision seemed to take corrupt Curia officials like Bertone by surprise and allowed the reform camp to manuever Bergoglio into place. Based on the speed of the conclave (five ballots), it seems that Bergoglio was the first choice of the reformists but they were also able to keep their preferred choice under wraps.

However, it might only work with someone like B16 who is shy and reserved by nature. I’m not sure if Bergoglio would make a very good ex-pope because he seems very strong willed.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 2:09 PM

Also, I’ve heard that some traditionalist Catholics are concerned about Papa Francisco. I think that this is completely missing the point. Papa Francisco seems to like short Masses, but I don’t think he minds if people like Latin Masses instead. Those that think that he is going to change any doctrines have completely missed the point.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 2:13 PM

However, it might only work with someone like B16 who is shy and reserved by nature. I’m not sure if Bergoglio would make a very good ex-pope because he seems very strong willed.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 2:09 PM

At this point, we don’t even know what kind of former Pope Benedict XVI is going to be. This is uncharted ground. What kind of role does a former Pope assume?

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 2:17 PM

The fact that he falls for this Cow’s shenanigans is not a good sign at all.

Schadenfreude on March 28, 2013 at 2:18 PM

Then let God comfort them. Spend your time comforting the ones who were injured or devastated by the sweet innocent jailbirds. By comforting those in jail, you are giving the message that they can kill, maim, rob, rape, defraud, steel all they want, you will still comfort them and TS to their victims… Of course doing it, makes the librul hearts beat faster thinking they are doing something important.

Old Country Boy on March 28, 2013 at 1:33 PM

1)God is comforting the prisoners, through Pope Francis and others who visit and pray with inmates

2)Nobody is sending the message that you can kill, maim, rob, rape, defraud, steel (sic) all they want. What the Pope and the Church are doing is offering a path to redemption for people who commit such crimes and others. God loves all people, he does not love their sins and offers redemption to those who come to Him and repent.

3)I’m as far from ‘librul’ as you can get, but ministering to the sick, the elderly, the defenseless, and the incarcerated is something that Jesus called on us to do.

Trafalgar on March 28, 2013 at 2:25 PM

As a recovering catholic, this pope is starting to stick to me.

Alibali on March 28, 2013 at 2:30 PM

Faux humility from a very blasphemous man…’infallible’ indeed!

elihu on March 28, 2013 at 2:32 PM

At this point, we don’t even know what kind of former Pope Benedict XVI is going to be. This is uncharted ground. What kind of role does a former Pope assume?

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 2:17 PM

Agreed. But B16 never enjoyed the job and wanted to retire to Bavaria and write books in 2005. He definitely hated the public aspects of the papacy and he wasn’t as capable of an administrator as people thought he would be in 2005. I guess that these guys feel compelled to accept the role because they believe they were chosen by the Holy Spirit, but I wonder if B16 would have declined if he just considered the conclave a temporal election. B16 will probably be happy to quietly write books and not criticize his predecessor.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 2:37 PM

Faux humility from a very blasphemous man…’infallible’ indeed!

elihu on March 28, 2013 at 2:32 PM

During Holy Week, Really? Take your hatred elsewhere.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 2:38 PM

One of my favorite passages…

34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.

37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

Matthew 25:34-40

I’m not Catholic, but I’m encouraged by this pope…

The fact that he falls for this Cow’s shenanigans is not a good sign at all.

Schadenfreude on March 28, 2013 at 2:18 PM

Just because he met with her doesn’t mean anything. Holding anger in his heart against a woman who called him her political enemy, would go against Christ’s teachings. Plus, I’m thinking the crow on the flight over tasted lovely

She had refused for years to cross the plaza to meet him. Now she would have to travel around the world and face him before the cameras.

Now THAT is divine schadenfreude! :)

dominigan on March 28, 2013 at 2:39 PM

As a recovering catholic, this pope is starting to stick to me.

Alibali on March 28, 2013 at 2:30 PM

It is okay for you to come back. I did.

Trafalgar on March 28, 2013 at 2:25 PM

Also, these are very young offenders who probably committed small time drug crimes or thievery.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 2:40 PM

Just because he met with her doesn’t mean anything. Holding anger in his heart against a woman who called him her political enemy, would go against Christ’s teachings. Plus, I’m thinking the crow on the flight over tasted lovely…

Who do you think is more popular in Argentina right now?

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 2:42 PM

B16 will probably be happy to quietly write books and not criticize his predecessor.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 2:37 PM

Which is why I’m curious why he opted to stay at the Vatican in “retirement” instead of heading back to Munich. In a general sense I would think that Pope Francis isn’t overly thrilled with having his predecessor underfoot in such a small tight-knit place like the Vatican.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 2:44 PM

Forget it! People are in prisons for a reason.

Blake on March 28, 2013 at 12:48 PM

Mary Magdalene and Matthew were social outcasts for a reason, as well.

Gelsomina on March 28, 2013 at 2:49 PM

As a recovering catholic, this pope is starting to stick to me.

Alibali on March 28, 2013 at 2:30 PM

We’re more than happy to have you Home :)

thebrokenrattle on March 28, 2013 at 2:54 PM

Which is why I’m curious why he opted to stay at the Vatican in “retirement” instead of heading back to Munich.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 2:44 PM

They have more books at the Vatican.

steebo77 on March 28, 2013 at 3:12 PM

I’m all over the place about this issue. Yes this is the Pope and security is an issue. But how does a priest, even the leader of the faith, do his job from behind a plexiglass bubble?

[Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 1:59 PM]

One can be all over the place on everything a Pope does. Some Popes may be called to do their job behind a plexiglass bubble, or maybe just with green eye-shade on.

Personally, I think he could have sent a better message if he went to the Italian Parliament and washed feet there, even though it probably would have saved fewer souls than at the detention center.

Dusty on March 28, 2013 at 3:12 PM

Mary Magdalene and Matthew were social outcasts for a reason, as well.

Gelsomina on March 28, 2013 at 2:49 PM

Mary Magdalene wasn’t a prostitute, but she did have a “demonic possession.”

Which is why I’m curious why he opted to stay at the Vatican in “retirement” instead of heading back to Munich. In a general sense I would think that Pope Francis isn’t overly thrilled with having his predecessor underfoot in such a small tight-knit place like the Vatican.

Happy Nomad on March 28, 2013 at 2:44 PM

A lot of people think that B16′s decision may have to do with preventing himself from being called to testify in a civil case by victims of priestly sexual abuse. The scandal that engulfed the American Church about ten years ago has landed in Europe, and I am sure that an enterprising lawyer would love nothing more than to make a big splash by deposing the former pope. Since B16 was in charge of dealing with the scandal before he became pope, he probably knows some embarassing stuff that the Church would prefer not be brought up.

I also don’t think that Papa Francisco minds the new living arrangements. This is someone with an iron will who has managed to make a pretty significant stamp on the papacy in less than a month. B16 is also another person for Bergoglio to visit. If anything, Benedict might end up regretting the situation especially if he has to play host to his chatty successor on a regular basis.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 3:13 PM

The fact that he falls for this Cow’s shenanigans is not a good sign at all.

Schadenfreude on March 28, 2013 at 2:18 PM

I’m sure he didn’t fall for anything.

However, no mention of Cristina Fernández de Kirchner can go by without me posting a link to this wonderful performance, possibly her greatest.

steebo77 on March 28, 2013 at 3:16 PM

” Prison chaplain Father Gaetano Greco told CNA that the Pope’s visit “will make them see that their lives are not bound by a mistake, that forgiveness exists and that they can begin to build their lives again.”

Fr. Greco confirmed that Pope Francis will wash the feet of 12 of the young people at the detention center after the Vatican announced that the new Holy Father was planning to celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper at Rome’s Casal del Marmo juvenile detention center on Holy Thursday.

Some of the young men volunteered to have their feet washed, Fr. Greco explained, while others were given an invitation to help them overcome their embarrassment or self-consciousness.

But all of them are very happy, and the visit will make them think, reconsider and understand that there are people in this world who are concerned for them,” he said.

He added that many of the juveniles come from broken families and have sought an escape in drugs and crime.

“That Pope Francis himself is concerned for them is very significant, because it exposes this problem that so many disadvantaged boys and girls are experiencing,” the priest said.

The residents chosen to have their feet washed by the Pope range in age from 16 to 21 years old…”

http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/pope-francis-to-offer-hope-by-washing-young-inmates-feet/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+catholicnewsagency%2Fdailynews+%28CNA+Daily+News%29&utm_content=Google+Reader&utm_term=daily+news

workingclass artist on March 28, 2013 at 3:21 PM

“Pope Francis recalled for around 40 young detainees how Jesus washed the disciples’ feet and said that he would willingly do the same for them because he is called to serve.??

“It is the example set by Our Lord, it’s important for Him to wash their feet, because among us the one who is highest up must be at the service of others,” the Pope said, recounted Jesus response to Peter’s refusal for the youths.

“This is a symbol, it is a sign – washing your feet means I am at your service. And we are (servants) too, among each other, but we don’t have to wash each other’s feet each day. So what does this mean? That we have to help each other …” Pope Francis explained March 28 at Casal del Marmo youth detention facility.

The Pope also offered a heartfelt explanation for why he was washing the feet of the young prisoners.

“This is what Jesus teaches us. This is what I do. And I do it with my heart. I do this with my heart because it is my duty, as a priest and bishop I must be at your service.

“But it is a duty that comes from my heart and a duty I love. I love doing it because this is what the Lord has taught me,” he said.

The Pope encouraged the youths to become more self-giving and helpful. “And thus,” he added, “in helping each other we will do good for each other.”??

Just before performing the ceremony of the Washing of the Feet, Pope Francis told the youths to ask themselves ‘Am I really willing to help others?’

“Think that this sign is Christ’s caress, because Jesus came just for this, to serve us, to help us,” he concluded.

After Communion, the Pope moved the Blessed Sacrament to the Altar of Repose and spent some time adoring Jesus in the Eucharist…”

http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/i-do-this-with-my-heart-pope-says-before-washing-inmates-feet/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+catholicnewsagency%2Fdailynews+%28CNA+Daily+News%29&utm_content=Google+Reader&utm_term=daily+news

workingclass artist on March 28, 2013 at 3:24 PM

I also don’t think that Papa Francisco minds the new living arrangements. This is someone with an iron will who has managed to make a pretty significant stamp on the papacy in less than a month. B16 is also another person for Bergoglio to visit. If anything, Benedict might end up regretting the situation especially if he has to play host to his chatty successor on a regular basis.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 3:13 PM

*facepalm*

workingclass artist on March 28, 2013 at 3:26 PM

Personally, I think he could have sent a better message if he went to the Italian Parliament and washed feet there, even though it probably would have saved fewer souls than at the detention center.

Dusty on March 28, 2013 at 3:12 PM

A large proportion of the youths at the detention center are muslims…Who were ignorant of the Pope.

According to the director of the facility, after the significance of the visit was explained to them by a neopolitan inmate they became sincerely excited by the visit.

Who knows…maybe an act of charity so simple…has power?

workingclass artist on March 28, 2013 at 3:32 PM

I saw the pictures online. The whole thing was moving. Also, the facility includes both boys and girls and many of the inmates aren’t Catholic or Italian… so two Muslims and two girls got their feet washed. At first, many didn’t realize what a huge deal this was and the few that did had to explain it to the others. Once they realized what a big deal it was all the kids were apparently very moved.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 3:34 PM

*facepalm*

workingclass artist on March 28, 2013 at 3:26 PM

Hee.. talk about two men with completely different personalities. Ratzinger is an introvert and people have described him as being incredibly shy. Bergoglio clearly became a pastor because he loves people.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 3:37 PM

It could be worse for him, he could try doing this in France.

slickwillie2001 on March 28, 2013 at 3:58 PM

He’s going to run up a pretty big tab at that hotel… probably ought to go for the apartment.

morganfrost on March 28, 2013 at 4:32 PM

He’s going to run up a pretty big tab at that hotel… probably ought to go for the apartment.

morganfrost on March 28, 2013 at 4:32 PM

As long as he stays out of the minibar, he should be fine. ;)

It is more of a guesthouse than an actual hotel.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 4:40 PM

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 4:40 PM

Plus it’s the Vatican hotel, isn’t it? Like staying at a hotel you own, right?

As much as I liked and still enjoy Cardinal Ratzinger’s writings, and as much of a scholar and genius, in addition to very pious person he is, Papa Francis is proving such a wonderful example, even for a protestant like me. He seems to be espousing the principles all Christians can appreciate and respect…and possibly even emulate.

Sgt Steve on March 28, 2013 at 5:33 PM

Pope Francis the First. Soft on crime.

;)

Genuine on March 28, 2013 at 6:07 PM

Sgt Steve

Yes. It was basically built especially for the conclaves.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 6:32 PM

He’s going to run up a pretty big tab at that hotel… probably ought to go for the apartment.

morganfrost on March 28, 2013 at 4:32 PM

He’s going to run up a pretty big tab at that hotel… probably ought to go for the apartment.

morganfrost on March 28, 2013 at 4:32 PM

As long as he stays out of the minibar, he should be fine. ;)

It is more of a guesthouse than an actual hotel.

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 4:40 PM

Illinidiva on March 28, 2013 at 4:40 PM

Plus it’s the Vatican hotel, isn’t it? Like staying at a hotel you own, right?

As much as I liked and still enjoy Cardinal Ratzinger’s writings, and as much of a scholar and genius, in addition to very pious person he is, Papa Francis is proving such a wonderful example, even for a protestant like me. He seems to be espousing the principles all Christians can appreciate and respect…and possibly even emulate.

Sgt Steve on March 28, 2013 at 5:33 PM

The apartment he’s staying in is the 2 room Papal Suite and he’s more comfortable there…It’s where a lot of the vatican staff live. Cardinals and visiting priests & scholars stay there as well.

Pope Francis celebrates an early morning Mass with the staff before he heads into the office St. Peter’s

workingclass artist on March 28, 2013 at 7:37 PM

The fact that he falls for this Cow’s shenanigans is not a good sign at all.

Schadenfreude on March 28, 2013 at 2:18 PM

He didn’t fall for anything. He is now the head of the Catholic Church. He is not representing the Argentinean Church but Catholicism as a whole. This was a) one encounter during his inauguration, and b) popes has historically listened to heads of states and others. However that doesn’t mean they agree with that person.

If anything it is the other way around: Cristina has have to bend backwards now trying to paint herself as all hunky-dory with Francis since he holds much better public opinion in Argentina than she does, by far. If anything it is the first time she has have to accept she lost the battle in order to get what she wants out of the upcoming elections.

However, no mention of Cristina Fernández de Kirchner can go by without me posting a link to this wonderful performance, possibly her greatest.

steebo77 on March 28, 2013 at 3:16 PM

I can’t stand that woman steebo77, but I had LOL at that.

ptcamn on March 29, 2013 at 10:26 AM