THE WASHING OF THE FEET ON MAUNDRY THURSDAY AT THE PATRIARCHATE
The Washing of the Feet rite was held on Holy Thursday, the 15th/28th of April, in the court of the Holy Church of the Resurrection. The rite was preceded by the Divine Liturgy of St Basil the Great, in commemoration of the Lord’s Last Supper, at St James Cathedral, by the Church of the Resurrection. The divine Liturgy was led by His Beatitude Theophilos, Patriarch of Jerusalem, having as concelebrants Archbishops Aristarchos of Constantina and Theodosios of Sebaste, Metropolitan Joachim of Zambia, and the presbyters of the church, fathers Issa Touma and Farah Bantour. Archimandrite Aristovoulos sang on the right, with members of St James Cathedral Choir singing on the left under Mr Remon Kamar, in the presence of the Greek Consul-General to Jerusalem. A crowd of faithful from the Orthodox Countries of Greece, Cyprus, Romania, Ukraine and Russia, attended the service.
On the conclusion of the d. Liturgy, His Beatitude walked to the middle of the court of the Church of the Resurrection where, on a platform, He went on to wash the feet of twelve Hagiotaphites, namely: Archimandrites Nektarios, Philoumenos, Modestos, Stephanos, Ieronymos, Kallistos, Eusebius, Serghios, Ignatios, Porphyrios, Matthew and f. Charalambos, according to the relevant narratives in the Gospels, read by the Patriarchal Commissioner, Metropolitan Isychios of Kapitolias, from the pulpit adjacent to the wall of the Monastery of Abraham. The rite is performed in commemoration of the washing of the feet of the twelve disciples by Christ, indicating humbleness as the path to excellence.
This pious rite was observed by pilgrims standing around the platforms, on the stands of the Dependency of Gethsemane or on the roofs of the Monastery of Abraham and of Sts Constantine and Helen.
On the conclusion of the rite and amidst bells joyfully ringing, the Patriarchal Entourage returned to the Patriarchates, where Patriarch Theophilos wished that they all be graced with the power and blessing of our Lord Jesus Christ in order to partake in His Passion and Resurrection.
From the Secretariat-General