Skip to product information
1 of 1

3. Foot Washing of the Prodigal Son

3. Foot Washing of the Prodigal Son

Regular price $22.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $22.00 USD
Sale Sold out
Tax included.

“Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’But the father said to his servants,” Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet.” LK 15: 21-22

In the well known Parable of the Prodigal Son we know the father gave the son a new robe and sandals in the above mentioned verses. This painting suggests: might the father have washed his son’s feet before he put on the new sandals? It’s a fascinating question and reflection, one that my friend came up with and asked me to do a commissioned painting of that hypothetical scene.

Foot washing was customary at the time, and this foot washing is a possibility, and even if it didn’t happen, the symbolism of foot washing was present: cleansing of sins, reconciliation, a new beginning. God the Father ran out to us with His son dying on the cross to save us just as this father ran out to his son and forgave him of the transgressions. It all matches up and is a rich point of prayer and contemplation.

In the painting, I included those new sandals laid out for the son, a small bowl of water for foot washing, gentle drips of water, and the two main figures, father and son, in a style reminiscent of the late Tomie dePaola whose artistic and childlike renderings have always captured my heart. Much of the canvas hosts florals and trees( the tree behind the father is an olive tree, historically a symbol of God’s promises to his people).

A golden “path” is poured from a smudged in scene of Golgotha, the three crosses and the middle where Jesus died, down to the place of the feet washing. The connection is clear, forgivenesses of sins. It gives an otherwise childlike, bright painting that salient hook.

available in print only

View full details