Jesus Remember Me

“Right at the depth of the human condition, lies the longing for a presence, the silent desire for a communion. Let us never forget that this simple desire for God is already the beginning of faith.” The simple desire for God is an important step toward prayer that is practiced in the Taize community founded by Brother Roger, author of the above quote.

The Taize community is a monastic order of brothers that exists in the small community of Taize, France. Brother Roger and his sister set up a safe haven for refugees from WWII. They offered hospitality when people of all faiths needed it the most. After the war, Brother Roger was joined by a community of brothers and with the help of his sister again they began to offer hospitality to prisoners -of-war and children that had lost their parents in the war.

The Taize community is well-known for their meditative, reflective, and contemplative style of worship. Their worship includes very simple elements. They create a very warm and inviting atmosphere, using candlelight and icons to direct their attention to the One, True Light. Their worship includes scripture readings, Psalms, reflective readings, silence, and short, chant-like songs rooted in Scripture. These songs mostly created by their founder Brother Roger are intended to be repeated for long periods of time. These chants are repeated in order to allow time and space for the worshipper to lose themselves in the words and music and allow the song to become part of their very being, a prayer that flows from their spirit.cross woods

Many communities of faith around the world have borrowed the quiet, contemplative style of worship. This style of worship is intended to quiet the soul and express one’s desire for God. During lent, we are using a Taize piece for our Prayer Hymn: “Jesus, Remember Me”.  Each week, we are repeating the song a little longer.  My hope is that as we sing this piece over and over again, you will be able to let go and allow this prayer to flow through you. Lent is an appropriate time to introduce this piece in worship as this particular chant-like piece uses the words of one of criminals on a cross next to Jesus from Luke 23:42. Above is a link to this piece.  I encourage you to listen to this piece, think, reflect, sing, and pray.  As you hear the words of this piece repeated, remember and be encouraged by Brother Roger’s words, “the simple desire for God is already the beginning of faith.”

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