Tips From An Insider

Advice for the time that you’re the guest preacher, participating in the footwashing at an Anglo-Catholic parish: Don’t do what I did.
That is, somewhere between when Fr. Cobb washed my foot (only one each, here) and when I had to put my shoes back on to take my shift as a footwasher, I lost track of my sock. Since people were already lining up, I just jammed my shoe back on and hoped I would be able to see it when this phase of the service was over. Alas, the last congregant left the bench, I went to wash Fr Cobb’s foot, returned to my place, scanned the floor discreetly from my seat, to no avail.
On the other hand, when it’s a very liturgically savvy parish, things like this happen: at the peace, I sidled up to the MC and said, “Did anyone by any chance find a sock?” He inclined his head toward the servers’ seating area, where my sock had been retrieved and deposited. (I put it back on during the offertory, all was well.)

6 thoughts on “Tips From An Insider

  1. Yeah, I haven’t been anyplace on Maundy Thursday where I wasn’t wearing Birkenstocks for a long time. But that would not have done at Christ Church.

  2. Ah! I see. That would be a difficult transition for me now, I think. (He says as he sits in an airport waiting for a flight wearing only flip flops on his feet.)

  3. Actually, we do have folks acolyte in sandals from time to time.. so it would have done. A bit chilly to go sockless though. Great having you here and glad no clothing articles were lost. That wouldn’t have done.

  4. Sorry, David — I should have said, “I wouldn’t dream of wearing Birkenstocks to Christ Church as a guest preacher.”
    Dear readers, you missed the best Holy Week liturgies anywhere on earth: the choir was celestial, the liturgy was awe-inspiring, and the church and congregation are lovely. Wish you had been there!

  5. One of the great things about today’s Christ Church is that without our changing from the formality of the liturgy, nobody at all seems to care how we parishioners dress (or clergy for that matter). Whether we wear shoes or sandals or go barefoot I doubt anyone would notice, much less be offended. From my perspective, Christ Church increasingly focuses on the Mass as our self-presentation to God in Christ, “unto whom all hearts are open, all desires known.”

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