Dominie Burton writes:
“I first went to Taizé in 1974, not knowing anything about it. Thinking I was a Christian when I went I was surprised to discover that actually it was during this visit to Taizé that I really became a Christian. There was a definite shift from ‘head knowledge of the possibility of a relationship with Jesus’ to ‘heart knowledge of what that relationship actually felt like’. Over the years I have been back many times. Drawn by the contemplative style of worship and the opportunities to meet and learn with such a wide range of people.
“The teaching is from both the Old and New Testaments and always aimed at deepening our relationship with Christ. The two questions which seem to be the underlying themes are – ‘What is your relationship with God?’ and, ‘What are you doing about it?’ These questions take a long time to think about and even longer to answer.
“If you go to Taizé, for a small daily contribution, you will be given everything you need – a place to sleep; three meals and a snack each day; people to teach you and to help you to pray; a chance to meet amazing people. But you will also learn the difference between want and need – a few home comforts along may help you enjoy the week. E.g. there are no cushions at all anywhere in Taizé, the only pillows are those taken by visitors. Life in Taizé is very simple, it enables you to prepare your life for the next stage of your journey when you go home.
“What have I got out of Taizé over the years?
- I have discovered the amazing difference a personal relationship with God makes.
- I have appreciated the benefits of a regular spiritual stocktake.
- I have learned how to listen for God’s word and to hear him speak.
- I have learned that Ecumenism is possible if we focus on our similarities and not our differences.
Actually, the list is endless . . .”
To experience Taizé worship for yourself, why not take a look at our online Taizé service for July?