Today my Bishop gathered with his six priests of the Western Convocation of our diocese to celebrate the Holy Eucharist. That in itself is not too unusual. He is pastoral, caring, and available to his clergy. Today, however, was different. After the liturgy of the word and a homily he got down on his knees and washed our feet. The chapel was filled with the silence of great love and humility interrupted only by the sound of water. A hug followed the washing. My relationship with my Bishop has been forever changed. I now have a share with him (John 13:8).
After the foot washing we renewed our commitment to our ministry, under the pastoral direction of our bishop, and reaffirmed our promises
- to give our self to prayer and study;
- so to minister the Word of God and Sacraments of the New Covenant that the reconciling love of Christ may be known and received;and
- to be a faithful servant of all those committed to our care, patterning our life in accordance with the teachings of Christ, so that we may be a wholesome example to our people.
We prayed, “May the Lord who has given us the will to do these things, give us the grace and power to perform them.” All this was done within the celebration of the Holy Eucharist.
I am deeply grateful for my Bishop, for my vocation and the people entrusted to my care, for this Holy Week, and for God revealed in Jesus Christ.
thanks for sharing this. it is good to be united in ministry.
Indeed it is. There are many gifts and ministries but there is one Body and One Spirit, one hope in God’s call to us, one Lord, one Faith, one Baptism, one God and Father of us all.
The foot washing service is profoundly moving…
…and deeply intimate – perhaps more than any other liturgy of the year.
Wow. What a humbling experience!
We in the Rio Grande Valley Convocation did so as well and I echo your words as to how truly grateful I am to the call God has touched my life with and the ministry in which we share with our bishops. God bless you and thanks, Mike, for the good work you do on this blog.
Earl, thank you for your kind and encouraging words. Blessings on your Easter and ministry.