During Thursday's intimate service, the Pope washed and kissed the feet of 12 young detainees to replicate the Bible's account of Jesus Christ's gesture of humility towards his 12 apostles on the night before he was crucified.
and kissed the feet of 12 young detainees to replicate the Bible's account of
Jesus Christ's gesture of humility towards his 12 apostles on the night before
he was crucified.
Italian Catholic and one of Serbian Muslim origin, local prison ombudsman
Angiolo Marroni said ahead of the ceremony.
The 12 inmates included two girls, one
their feet washed, while others were given an invitation to help them overcome
their embarrassment, the Catholic News Agency quoted the prison chaplain as saying.
Some of the prisoners volunteered to have
from different nationalities and diverse religious confessions were taking part
in Thursday's Mass at Casal del Marmo on the outskirts of Rome.
In total, around 10 girls and 40 boys
billion Roman Catholics has truly brought a new sense of simplicity to the
The new leader of the world's 1.2
foot-washing ceremony, which is normally performed on lay people in one of
He has broken with tradition for the
2007, but not for the Holy Thursday Mass. Only for the first two years of his
pontificate did he perform the feet-washing himself, after which the task was
delegated to priests.
Pope Benedict XVI visited the centre in
the calendar of the Catholic Church.
Easter is the most important festival in
carry a wooden cross and pray at a ceremony at Rome's ancient amphitheatre, the
Colosseum, commemorating Jesus' crucifixion.
On Good Friday evening the Pope will
celebrate the main Easter Vigil Mass in St Peter's Basilica.
On Saturday evening Pope Francis will
Pope will deliver his first "Urbi et Orbi" message to the city of
Rome and to the world.
And on Easter Sunday morning, the new
Wednesday, Pope Francis called for an immediate political solution to the
conflict in the Central African Republic after last weekend's coup.
During his inaugural general audience on