Volume 63, Issue 1, June 2023

Thomas O’Loughlin
Pages 239-251

Foot Washing in the Church of Hippo
Augustine as an Interpreter of a Liturgical Practice

One of the matters on which the layman Januarius questioned Augustine was on differences regarding the celebration of the foot washing in various churches. Augustine, unwilling to accept the assumptions of his questioner’s ecclesiology, defends the practice – in all its variety – as a useful means of communication of the gospel. The exchange allows us to see aspects of Augustine’s view of both liturgy and catechesis using a very precise screen. This, in turn, reminds modern scholarship of just how little we know about the north African liturgy.

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