Thursday, April 17, 2014

For Rehab Patients, Francis Makes "The Act of A Slave"

Continuing the custom he began as archbishop of Buenos Aires, on this Holy Thursday night the Pope began the Paschal Triduum with the Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper in a facility of "pastoral need" – this time around, a house of the Don Gnocchi Foundation, a skilled-care center in Rome's Casal del Marmo section, not far from the juvenile detention house which Francis chose for this night last year, to the enduring shock of many in the Vatican and beyond.

Contrary to last year's rites, this time around saw a complete live broadcast of the Mass by Vatican television. Until the Bergoglio change-up, for roughly a millennium the Popes celebrated the Holy Thursday liturgy at Rome's cathedral, St John Lateran, which had been the papal residence until the move to the Vatican in the 1400s.

Given off-the-cuff, homily to come... but for now, here's video of the moment likely to garner the most interest – as a contemporary setting of the Ubi Caritas strummed in the background, the washing (and, per tradition, kissing) of the feet of 12 patients, aged 16 to 86, women and men alike: