Every Friday 10.30-12 at Chester Cathedral (St John's Church on 8 & 15 Dec)
Founded in 1940 by Brother Roger (Roger Schutz 1915-2005) Taizé is an ecumenical monastic community in France where brothers (and now sisters too) from various Christian traditions live, work and worship together in the interests of building peace. The community welcomes visitors from all over the world and is a popular place of retreat and renewal for Christians of many denominations.
The Taizé community have developed a particular form of worship comprised of short chants, usually taking phrases from scripture, that are sung over and over to bring the singers to a state of contemplation. Designed to be accessible for all peoples, the songs can be sung in many languages including French, English, Spanish, German, Polish, Russian, Ukranian and Chinese as well as Latin. They are often accompanied by musical instruments but can also be sung without, a cappella, as we do here in our practice sessions.
Our Taizé sessions, usually held in the Lady Chapel in Chester Cathedral, are offered as an opportunity to learn and enjoy singing the songs and are enjoyed by the staff and visitors at the Cathedral too. Everyone is welcome to take part, regardless of experience, and all the songs are taught by ear so you don’t need to read music. Song books are available if you find them helpful. When the Cathedral is busy with other events we often sing at St John’s Church. There is a charge for the sessions but noone is excluded on finacial grounds so please just pay what you can.
“When I am singing with the Taize group it makes me forget about everything else and live in the moment”
Taizé services will continue to be a regular part of the Cathedral’s programme of services in 2023. These are always open to the public and are free of charge. You are very wecome to attend the services whether or not you have been to any of the sessions.
We will be co-leading a service for Advent at St James, Christleton on Sunday 3 Decmber at 6.30pm
The next Cathedral service will be 6pm on Sunday 17 December
Ella says “I strongly believe that God does not expect perfection but rather for us to show up as we are with all our human imperfection, to come as we are and to sing for the joy of it. I do not offer these sessions as formal worship, though I appreciate this may be a deeply prayerful experience for some participants. Many of the regular singers would not see themselves as such, and yet the quality of sound created is wonderful. I would encourage anyone who is drawn to to come along and join us for a song or two. People of any faith or none are all very welcome.”
Find out more at www.taize.fr and www.chestercathedral.com/worship-music/services
“I would encourage anyone who likes to sing to come along to our sessions where they will be met with a warm welcome, acceptance, fellowship and friendship. Each session is a joyful occasion where we are encouraged and supported by Ella and the rest of the group”