“So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have set you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you.”
What might it mean for us to wash one another’s feet in 2021? In a time when we cannot gather in person? In a culture where foot-washing does not hold the same meaning or significance that it did for Jesus and his disciples? How might we still follow the example Jesus set of humility, service, love, and solidarity?
Jesus began his public ministry with these words, “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Soon after Jesus washed the feet of the disciples, he would be subjected to unjust criminal proceedings and would suffer violence and death at the hands of the state. This Maundy Thursday we invite you to reflect on those who have suffered unjust criminal proceedings and who have experienced state-sanctioned violence.
We also invite you to follow Jesus’ example of humility, service, love, and solidarity by connecting with an incarcerated person. Becoming a penpal with an incarcerated person is a way to offer moral, social, and spiritual support to someone who has been cut off from the free world. It pushes us to see the value and God-given dignity of each person, challenges our unexamined ideas about punishment and the carceral system, and reminds us that redemptive Love is available and accessible to all.
If you are interested, here are the steps to take:
1. We will do a short training with Abolition Apostles to go over the logistics of letter writing and assign you a pen pal.
2. Please email ANC Preaching Guild member Esha Rajendran if you would like to attend the training or if you have any questions. Put “Pen Pal” in the email subject line.
3. Letters can be handwritten or sent digitally and a PO Box return address will be provided so your privacy is protected.