Q: I just started in a new parish as liturgy director. I’ve been told by parishioners that it has been the”tradition” here to have the priest wash a few people’s feet and then those go and wash other’s feet, and so on and so on. I don’t think this is allowed is it? Though I don’t know if it is specifically addressed or prohibited. I’ve organized many triduums but I have never encountered a parish that did this. I hope to have my facts straight before I discuss it with our priest.
A: The practice does exist in a few parishes around the country. I’ve never witnessed it personally, but I know people who love it. I addressed it in my book Glory in the Cross. In reality, the whole foot washing ceremony is optional, and I think that’s why liturgical practice has varied when it’s put into place.