Every first Wednesday of the month, a group gathers in a circle at the front of the Sanctuary at Rainbow for a simple service of prayer and song, known as Taizé. I was first introduced to Taizé services in seminary, and am glad to be in a community that values this monastic way of centering, praying and worshiping.
Taizé actually refers to a community in France. It is an ecumenical monastic order, which brings together people from around the world. Our very own Rachel Hostetler has visited this community and is one of the leaders of this monthly service at Rainbow.
I find these services to be calming, partly because I love sitting in the Sanctuary at Rainbow with dimmed lights, and candles, and light streaming through the stained glass windows. I become aware of my shallow breath and breathing, and then find a rhythm and then, after awhile, if I really listen, the community gathered starts to breathe together and you realize that you are part of something much larger and more profound. The songs that we sing are simple and repetitive. And you might think you would get bored singing the same words and melody over and over, but somehow every time through, the song is different. People’s voices and energy fade in and out, and eventually, some will start to hum, or simply sit in silence soaking in the rich sounds and light. The point is not to perform the song or get the notes right, the point is to be Present to the moment, Present to our breath, Present to one another, Present to God.
This is generally what you can expect if you come tonight, and I hope you do come tonight!
Prelude by amazing musicians
Meditation reading (usually not scripture)
Time of silent worship
3 Songs (with the encouragement to light a candle during this time)
Short Closing Prayer (from Taizé website)
Postlude by amazing musicians