Shoe cleaners follow in the footsteps of Jesus

The Rev John Challis polishes Pat Dean's shoes
The Rev John Challis polishes Pat Dean's shoes

CHURCHES in Steyning and Upper Beeding have marked Maundy Thursday by cleaning shoes for free.

Representatives from various churches, co-ordinated by the 3bs Parish, were outside Upper Beeding Post Office this morning urging passers by to have their shoes cleaned for free.

The Rev John Challis, vicar at Upper Beeding, Bramber and Botolphs, explained: “As Jesus washed his disciples’ feet on the day that we call Maundy Thursday, so we have been serving others in our community.

“A number of us from St Peter’s Church and Churches Together in Steyning were outside the Post Office in Upper Beeding cleaning shoes today.”

First customer was Pat Dean, who popped down from her home in Upper Beeding having seen the shoe cleaning advertised in the parish magazine.

“I must say, it is a good idea,” she said.

More followed, some taking their smart shoes along especially for cleaning and others stopping as they passed by.

The idea is a modern interpretation of the tradition of Jesus washing the feet of his disciples on the day before Good Friday.