The story of Taizé began in 1940 during World War II, when a man now known as Brother Roger left Switzerland for his mother’s birthplace, Taizé in France. He purchased a house there and eventually formed a community dedicated to unity and reconciliation. More than 90 Brothers now live at Taizé, drawn from over 30 countries.
The Community welcome pilgrims and seekers from every corner of the world, in a spirit of joy and simplicity. During the warmer months, so many people come that tents are erected in the nearby fields, where prayer services are held three times daily. Despite the large crowds, most of the day is set aside for silence and meditation.
Prayer and silence are at the heart of the life at Taizé. Services in the Community are formed around traditional elements of psalms, readings, silence, intercessions, and chants, offered in various languages. Icons and gentle candlelight encourage a sense of calm and quiet and contemplation.
Every Friday evening at Taizé, people gather around an icon of the cross of Christ – a moment to lay down one’s burdens and to reflect on the burdens of others.
On the first Friday of the month at 6.00pm at St John’s, we gather in solidarity with those who struggle and are weighed-down – singing together, sharing common prayer, and pausing in silence around the cross of Christ.
Our prayers are followed by a common meal.