Legacy of Brother Roger of Taizé
According to Brother Emile, Spokesman of the Ecumenical Community
TAIZÉ, France, AUG. 21, 2005 (Zenit) - The legacy left by Brother Roger Schutz, founder of the Community of Taizé, is illustrated in this testimony sent by Brother Emile, a spokesman for the ecumenical group.
* * *
It all began in great solitude, when in August of 1940, at 25 years of age, Brother Roger left Switzerland, the country of his birth, and went to live in France, his mother's country. For years, he felt the call to create a community in which reconciliation between Christians would be concretized every day, "in which the benevolence of heart would be lived very concretely, and where love would be in everyone's heart."
He wanted to realize that creation in the anguish of that moment, and in this way, at the height of the World War, he established himself in the small village of Taizé in Burgundy, a few kilometers from the line of demarcation that divided France in two parts. He then hid refugees (in particular Jews), who when fleeing from the occupied zone knew that they could find refuge in his home.
Later, other Brothers joined him and on Easter Sunday of 1949 the first Brothers committed themselves for life to celibacy, life in common, and great simplicity of life.
In the silence of a long retreat, in the winter of 1952-1953, the founder of the Community of Taizé wrote the Rule of Taizé, in which he pointed out to his Brothers "the essential that would allow for life in common."
Beginning in the '50s, some Brothers went to live in underprivileged areas to be near to people who suffer.
Since the end of the '50s, the number of young people who come to Taizé has increased markedly. Beginning in 1962, Brothers and youths sent by Taizé did not cease to come and go to countries of Eastern Europe, with great discretion, so as not to compromise those they were supporting.
Between 1962 and 1989 Brother Roger himself visited the majority of the countries of Eastern Europe, at times on the occasion of meetings with youths, permitted but watched, or of simple visits, without the possibility of speaking in public. "I will be silent with you," he would say to Christians of those countries.
In 1966, the Saint Andrew Sisters, an international Catholic community founded more than seven centuries ago, came to live in the neighboring village and began to help with some of the welcome endeavor. More recently, some Polish Ursuline nuns have also come to offer their collaboration.
Today the Community of Taizé includes some 100 Brothers, Catholics and of different evangelical origins, from more than 25 countries. Because of their own experience, they are a concrete sign of reconciliation between divided Christians and separated peoples.
In one of his last books, entitled "God Can Only Love" ("Dieu Ne Peut Qu'Aimer," Taizé Press), Brother Roger described his ecumenical itinerary thus: "I can remember that my maternal grandmother discovered intuitively a sort of key of the ecumenical vocation and opened the way for me to its concretization. Marked by the testimony of her life, while I was still very young, I later found my own Christian identity when reconciling within me the faith of my origins with the mystery of the Catholic faith, without any rupture of communion."
The Brothers don't accept any gifts or presents. They do not even accept personal inheritances, but give them to the poorest. They sustain community life with their work and share it with others.
Now there are small fraternities in the underprivileged neighborhoods of Asia, Africa, South and North America. The Brothers try to share the conditions of life of those around them, making efforts to be a presence of love among the poorest, street children, prisoners, the dying, those who are wounded in their deepest being by emotional ruptures and human abandonment.
Coming from all over the world, young people meet in Taizé every week of the year to attend meetings that can gather between two Sundays up to 6,000 people, representing more than 70 nations. Over the years, hundreds of thousands of young people have come to Taizé to reflect on the topic "interior life and human solidarities." In the sources of faith, they try to give their life meaning and they prepare to take on responsibilities in the areas where they live.
Men of the Church also come to Taizé. Thus, the Community welcomed Pope John Paul II, three Archbishops of Canterbury, Orthodox Metropolitans, 14 Swedish Lutheran Bishops, and numerous pastors from all over the world.
To support the young generations, the Community of Taizé animates a "pilgrimage of confidence on earth." This pilgrimage does not organize youths in a movement that is centered on the Community, but stimulates them to take peace, reconciliation and confidence to their cities, their universities, their workplaces and their parishes, in communion with all generations. As a stage of this "pilgrimage of confidence on earth," a five-day European meeting is organized at the end of every year in a large European city, of the East or West, attended by tens of thousands of young people.
On the occasion of a European meeting, Brother Roger would publish a "letter," translated into more than 50 languages, which was then meditated [on] throughout the year by young people in their homes or during Taizé meetings. The founder of Taizé often wrote this letter from a place of poverty where he lived for a time (Calcutta, Chile, Haiti, Ethiopia, the Philippines, South Africa).
Today, throughout the world, the name Taizé evokes peace, reconciliation, communion and the expectation of a springtime in the Church. "When the Church listens, heals, reconciles she realizes what is most luminous in herself, limpid reflection of a love" (Brother Roger).
http://www.catholic.org CA, US
Catholic Online - Publisher, 661 869-1000
Taize, Brother Roger, Schutz,
More Catholic PRWire
Showing 1 - 50 of 4,718
A Recession Antidote
Monaco & The Vatican: Monaco's Grace Kelly Exhibit to Rome--A Review of Monegasque-Holy See Diplomatic History
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.
A Royal Betrayal: Catholic Monaco Liberalizes Abortion
Dna. Maria St.Catherine De Grace Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.
Embrace every moment as sacred time
Mary Regina Morrell
Letting go is simple wisdom with divine potential
Mary Regina Morrell
Father Lombardi's Address on Catholic Media
Pope's Words to Pontifical Latin American College
Prelate: Genetics Needs a Conscience
State Aid for Catholic Schools: Help or Hindrance?
Scorsese Planning Movie on Japanese Martyrs
2 Nuns Kidnapped in Kenya Set Free
Holy See-Israel Negotiation Moves Forward
Franchising to Evangelize
Catholics Decry Anti-Christianity in Israel
Pope and Gordon Brown Meet About Development Aid
Pontiff Backs Latin America's Continental Mission
Cardinal Warns Against Anti-Catholic Education
Three words to a deeper faith
Relections for Lent 2009
Wisdom lies beyond the surface of life
Mary Regina Morrell
World Food Program Director on Lent
Pope's Lenten Message for 2009
Keeping a Lid on Permissiveness
Glimpse of Me
The 3 stages of life
Sex and the Married Woman
A Catholic Woman Returns to the Church
Modernity & Morality
Just a Minute
Catholic identity ... triumphant reemergence!
Edging God Out
Burying a St. Joseph Statue
George Bush Speaks on Papal Visit
Sometimes moving forward means moving the canoe
Mary Regina Morrell
Easter... A Way of Life
Papal initiative...peace and harmony!
Proclaim the mysteries of the Resurrection!
Jerusalem Patriarch's Easter Message
Good Friday Sermon of Father Cantalamessa
Papal Address at the End of the Way of the Cross
Cardinal Zen's Meditations for Via Crucis
Interview With Vatican Aide on Jewish-Catholic Relations
Pope Benedict XVI On the Easter Triduum
by Catholic Online
- St. Nerses the Great: Saint of the Day for Sunday, November 19, 2017
- Has Pope Francis violated the 8th Commandment, speaking out against ...
- Daily Reading for Monday, November 20th, 2017 HD Video
- Daily Reading for Tuesday, November 21st, 2017 HD Video
- The FBI may investigate Planned Parenthood
- Daily Readings for Sunday, November 19, 2017
- Pope Francis calls for end of life care to acknowledge mortality
- The Catholic Miracle. Become part of our incredible mission HD
- Daily Reading for Sunday, November 19th, 2017 HD
- Did Pope Francis blast 'perverse attitude' of climate change deniers? HD
- Scientists warn: The end of life as we know it is near HD
Learn about Catholic world
Inform - Inspire - Ignite
Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained
Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need
Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online
Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye
Today's bible reading
Products and services we offer
Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books
The California Network
Inspiring streaming service
Learn the Catholic way