Maundy Thursday Celebrated in Chapel
Maundy Thursday Celebrated in Chapel
Nam Nguyen ’18

On Thursday, March 29, members of the SAS community participated in a Maundy Thursday Chapel service, followed by Good Friday's all-night vigil. The annual tradition featured beautiful singing from the School's Andrean Ensemble, readings of passages from the Hymnal, and a talk given by Head Chaplain Jay Hutchinson. At the conclusion, Chaplain Hutchinson and Chaplain Dave DeSalvo performed a foot-washing ritual. For nonreligious people, the act of washing another person's feet may seem uncomfortable, but Chaplain Hutchinson describes the act in another light, "This service means more than any other for me. While Easter is obviously the critical holiday to the Christian faith, the opportunity to wash my students' feet is a privilege since it denotes their willingness to be vulnerable and my call to serve them. For as long as I have been at St. Andrew's since 2000, I have had the honor of performing this ritual on Maundy Thursday. The whole observation is one that is emblematic of and inspiring to the St. Andrew's mission of serving others and our world. I hear many students who have little 'church experience' say that it is one of the most moving and engaging religious observations they have ever participated in."

Class of 2021 student Griffin Pitt describes her experience participating in the holy service at a boarding school for the first time, "For the first time, I spent Maundy Thursday away from my family and our church, and for the first time, I participated in the foot washing. I was scared. Scared that I might mess up the ceremony, tip over the bowl of water, accidentally kick the [chaplain] (I have ticklish feet) or find some other way to embarrass myself. Taking part in the foot washing has strengthened my faith because it has shown me how much humility it would take for a King to wash his own servant's feet. When I think of Maundy Thursday, no longer do I just think of the action of washing another person's feet or having your own feet washed, but instead, I look at the symbolism of that event that happened over 2,000 years ago. For me, Maundy Thursday is a day of self-reflection to learn how to follow the example of selflessness Jesus Christ portrayed."