Umm…..what do you make of this? Pope Francis to offer Holy Thursday Mass in prison March 21, 2013Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disconcerting, General Catholic, Liturgy, Papa, pr stunts, sadness, scandals, the return.
Fr. Z is becoming concerned. Pope Francis is to offer the Mass of the Lord’s Supper at a Roman youth prison. This is a co-ed facility. Will there be a Papal female foot washing? (Fr. Z’s comments below in red)
FRANCIS WILL SAY HOLY THURSDAY MASS IN A ROMAN PRISON
Vatican City, 21 March 2013 (VIS) – On Holy Thursday, 28 March, the Holy Father Francis will celebrate the Chrism Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica in the morning and then, at 5:30pm in the afternoon, will go to celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper at the Casal del Marmo youth detention centre instead of the Basilica of St. John Lateran, where it had been traditionally held in past years.
The Mass of the Lord’s Supper is characterized by the announcement of the commandment of love and the gesture of washing the feet. [No, actually, the Mass of the Lord’s Supper is not “characterized” by the washing of feet, because that rite is an option. The Holy Thursday Mass is not characterized by an option. It is characterized by the establishment by the Lord of the Sacraments of the Eucharist and Holy Orders and the beginning of His Passion. I say this even though I am firmly rooted in St. Augustine’s commentary on the Gospel of John, in which the great bishop speaks of the need for ministry that gets down into the dirt.] In his ministry as Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Cardinal Bergoglio used to celebrate the Mass in a prison or hospital or hospice for the poor and marginalized. With this celebration at Casal del Marmo, Pope Francis will continue his custom, which is characterized by its humble context.
The other Holy Week celebrations will be held according to tradition, as established in a notification by the Office of Liturgical Celebrations.
Pope Benedict XVI also visited the Casal del Marmo youth detention centre, on 18 March in 2007, to celebrate Mass in the Chapel of the Merciful Father.
That last statement almost sounds like a “now, don’t freak out!, Pope Benedict did this too!” statement.
I am certain we shall see other interesting developments in the very near future. I would look for Cardinal Burke to be returning to the US, soon.