Its a great way to show that Christians are not afraid of getting their hands dirty in the service of others and demonstrating what loving your neighbour really means.
As part of the Church of Englands Washday initiative, Bishop Lee will roll up his sleeves and help with the washing up at the Swindon Night Shelter this Good Friday (3 April 2015).
Washday is a new take on Maundy Thursday when traditionally church people have washed peoples feet, as a way of telling the story of the Last Supper when Christ washed his disciples feet.
Washday encourages people to take part in practical social action during Lent and Holy Week. It is an opportunity to go out and wash anything and everything from cleaning windows for people who would find that difficult, washing a car, washing clothes for homeless people, or washing up mugs in an office.
The Swindon Night Shelter operates every Friday night from St Marys Church in Rodbourne Cheney and is run completely by local volunteers. They provide homeless people in the Swindon area with a free bed for the night, as well as a shower, a hot meal, and fellowship.
Bishop Lee will spend the evening of Good Friday with the volunteers at the Night Shelter, helping to serve food and drinks, chatting and praying with the guests, and of course mucking in with the washing up.
Bishop Lee says, Im delighted to be supporting the Washday campaign. Its a great way to show that Christians are not afraid of getting their hands dirty in the service of others and demonstrating what loving your neighbour really means.
The Swindon Night Shelter is an amazing example of what our churches are doing to support those in need in their communities. I will consider it an honour to spend a few hours on Good Friday working alongside the volunteers.
Becky Davison is one of the organisers of the Swindon Night Shelter. Becky says, The Night Shelter is always very busy serving up to 30 guests, so we are looking forward to Bishop Lee's help and support.
Washday is a great idea and provides some really practical help where it's needed most, at a time when Christians focus on the final days of Christ's life and his ultimate act of service for us.
Everyone is encouraged to take part in Washday: use your imagination and think how you could make a real difference in your community. You can do your washing on Maundy Thursday itself or anytime during Holy Week. Then post your pictures and videos using the hashtag #washday15 to inspire others.
Find out more at www.washday.org.
The Swindon Night Shelter is also looking for more volunteers so that they can open their doors more nights of the week. They also welcome donations of wash bags to give to their homeless guests, containing items such as soaps, flannels, clean pants and socks. For more information, email email@example.com.