The Neglected Practice of Foot-washing

The practice of foot-washing, based on the example and instruction of Jesus in John 13, has been a feature of many (though not all) Anabaptist churches during the past 500 years.

This practice has not been a feature of most other Christian traditions (with the exception of the formal and exceptional practice associated with Maunday Thursday), although some other churches and denominations have practised it.

Many argue that this is no longer culturally appropriate in contexts where washing the feet of guests is not regarded as a mark of hospitality. But this is one of the very few occasions when, according to the Gospel writer, Jesus explicitly said that he was setting an example for his disciples, so many Anabaptists have chosen to practise this, regardless of the cultural context.

Here we offer a number of articles and resources on the subject of foot-washing for churches interested in exploring this practice.