By C.M. Paul, in News » Guwahati Province (ING)
(Note: This is another example of priests in the Latin Rite spread all over India graciously and joyfully responding to the call of Francis Pappa to put an end to the archaic practice of inequality imposed on women in the Syromalabar and Malankara Churches. May it open their eyes we pray, as it happened to the eyes of Saul who became Paul when struck down from horse back. jk editor)
Dr. Mavely was heeding to the call of Pope Francis who set the example of including men and women in the feet washing ceremony on Holy Thursday, first day of the Easter Triduum, during which celebrant priest traditionally washed the feet of only men folk.
After reading of the passage from John`s Gospel (13:1-15) which narrates the incidents of the last supper, Dr Mavely wrapped a towel around his waist, knelt down before each one of 12 people and poured water on their feet, wiped off the water with a towel and kissed the feet.
“Each time I perform this action which Jesus did for his disciples, it has a deep impact on me. It makes me convinced that only from a position of service to others one can exercise authority,“ Dr Mavely shared at the homily.
Following the symbolic act of Jesus, Dr Mavely invited other members of the congregation gathered for the Holy Thursday Eucharist to wash each other`s feet.
Heeding to the VC`s invitation several pairs of students, faculty and staff spontaneously came forward and washed each others feet in a symbolic gesture of service and humility.“It was indeed an act of humility which I have never done before, me washing the feet of another person,“ said Assistant Professor Mr P. Joseph who washed the feet of a security staff.
Several pairs of students, faculty and staff took turns to come before the assembly and wash each others feet.