Home Daily Buzz Pope Francis Changes the Rules—Women Now Included in Easter Foot-Washing

Pope Francis Changes the Rules—Women Now Included in Easter Foot-Washing

Pope Francis announced that women must now be included in the foot-washing ceremonies held on Easter’s Holy Thursday. Previously, only men were allowed to participate in the ritual, but Francis said including women better represents the purpose behind Jesus washing his disciples’ feet at the Last Supper: “His giving of himself unto the end for the salvation of the world, his limitless charity.”

Francis said, “After careful consideration, I have decided to make a change to the Roman Missal. I therefore decree that the section according to which those persons chosen for the washing of the feet must be men or boys, so that from now on the pastors of the Church may choose the participants in the rite from among all the members of the People of God.”

In an effort to “foster Christian unity,” Francis has made concessions to Protestants, which many traditionalists resent, according to The Guardian. Most recently, “top officials from the Catholic and Lutheran churches released a joint press release describing a ‘common prayer’ that is to be used in services to mark next year’s 500th anniversary of the Protestant reformation, the movement that divided the church and was spearheaded by Luther.”

His longtime friend Oscar Crespo shared Francis had two priorities as Pope, which were to “change the rules for divorced couples,” and “the second was to eliminate the law of celibacy.”

Francis and Crespo had discussed celibacy “was not part of the doctrine of the church. It was started more than 1,000 years ago by a pope, and he considers it archaic, an antiquity which needs to be reconsidered.” Crespo said, “He thinks God made everyone to live in family, including priests.”

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Esther Laurie is a staff writer at churchleaders.com. Her background is in communication and church ministry. She believes in the power of the written word and the beauty of transformation and empowering others. When she’s not working, she loves running, exploring new places and time with friends and family. It’s her goal to work the word ‘whimsy’ into most conversations.