Every other Thursday night, gentle music and soft words fill the darkened STM Chapel as students briefly suspend their studies to gather in prayer. The faint glow of a few lights creates a welcoming warmth as we come together after a long day. Here our varied paths intersect, if only for a fleeting moment. We join together in Taizé prayer, an ecumenical, multilingual form of prayer that originated in 1940 in a community in Taizé, France and quickly spread around the world. It combines prayers, readings, and music with brief silences, leaving spaces for meditation and thought.
My personal connection to Taizé is twofold. I spent part of my junior year studying in France, so the songs of Taizé, particularly those written in French, hold a special place in my heart. I am also a musician, for me music is the most basic form of prayer. When I cannot manage spoken prayer, I sing or play an instrument. For me, Taizé music in particular creates a meditative space with its repetition of one or two lines, allowing the music to melt into a background for profound contemplation.
Ellen Jewett ‘16