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The ceremony of footwashing performed on Maundy Thursday in memory of Christ's action before the Last Supper (Jn. 13). When the Maundy Thursday Mass came to be celebrated in the morning, the Pedilavium remained in the evening as a separate service, confined to cathedral and abbey churches. Pius XII's Holy Week Ordinal placed it in the restored evening Mass immediately after the homily and recommended its observance in all churches. Twelve people (men according to the rubrics of the RC Church, but now sometimes including women) are led into the sanctuary, where the celebrant washes and dries the feet of each in turn. Provision for a pedilavium, which in the C of E had been dropped at the Reformation, was made in 1986 and is included in CW and modern liturgies of some other Provinces of the Anglican Communion. In the Byzantine rite a similar ceremony, mainly confined to cathedrals and monasteries, follows the Eucharistic liturgy.

Subjects: Christianity.

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