I’ve just returned from the Holy Thursday liturgy, which is one of my favorites of the entire year. I thought this Holy Thursday would be a little strange for me; I’m not used to being away from “home” during Easter. Our parish back home has a beautiful Holy Thursday liturgy, and I knew I would miss not being there. In fact, I’ve only been away twice — and those two times I happened to be in Rome. (St. Peter’s and St. John Lateran both have beautiful Holy Thursdays, too, in case you were wondering.)
But this evening was perfect. It reminded me a lot of home — a sacred & solemn liturgy, a beautiful choir, 3 seminarians, and 25 altar servers- including 12 altar servers that were about 4 feet tall.
After Father’s beautiful homily, the 12 4-foot altar servers pulled chairs in front of the altar rail — and they were the ones to get their feet washed. There was something particularly poignant in that– seeing their feet dangling down, not even long enough to touch the ground, their surplices askew, and Father bending down, washing and kissing their feet.
I wonder how many priestly vocations were rooted in those hearts this evening.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another;
even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. Jn 13:34