Taizé Liturgy at St Peter's
On the third Sunday of the month at 6.30pm, our evening service takes on the form of a Taizé Liturgy. Using the beautiful chants of the Taizé Community in France, we allow our evening prayer to grow from the silence observed prior to the service. That prayerful tradition of the last 800 years in our ancient building encourages us as the repetition of the chants stills our minds. We reflect on the words of the scriptures and psalms, before we slip into a period of silence where the flickering of candles on the altar and before the icons is the only source of activity, except for the focusing of the mind on the love of our God expressed in Jesus his beloved Son.
The liturgy is very simple and provides an opportunity to try something different. Increasingly it seems that there is just not enough silence and stillness in our world and in our lives. In the Taizé liturgy we can find the space in a brief hour to allow ourselves that silence and that stillness for which we long. Someone, with little specifically Christian allegiance, recently commented "I just come to be still for a while".
The Taizé Community in Burgundy has grown from the vision of one man, Brother Roger, who found himself confused at the divisions of the Christian church and within the human family. At the time when he sowed the seeds of Taizé, war was raging across Europe and his hope was that the Community that has grown up should be a parable of community, a place of hope and love and an instrument of reconciliation. It is now a focus of pilgrimage for hundreds of thousands each year, and burns brightly as a beacon of hope for both the Church and the world.
It is this vision and this spirit that we hope to capture as we worship in the mood and style of Taizé. Still the Church struggles with unity and more than ever our city, the wider community, fails to be a community as people are isolated and wrestle with the problems of modern life. These are subjects and focuses for our prayers at St. Peters as we are uniquely placed in the heart of the city. It is appropriate that we offer our prayers in the spirit of that community whose life work is to achieve peace, wholeness and reconciliation among all Gods people. We hope very much that members of our own church and those from other churches around the city will want to join us in this endeavour and find their own spiritual lives enriched. You too will be welcome.
Taizé web site
The Taizé Community - official web site (in ten languages!)