Norwich Taizé - services at various places of worship in and around Norwich
About Norwich Taizé
Norwich Taizé Prayer services began in Norwich in 1993 organised by a small group of people who put the services together and arrange the venues. We are an ecumenical group and everyone is welcome to come and worship Christ with us. Our ethos and aim is to encourage people of all denominations to meet together for worship and prayer and to explore and interpret the spirit of the Taizé community – working for reconciliation, trust and harmony among Christians worldwide.
The Taizé community in south east France had its beginnings 75 years ago as a place of shelter close to the area under German occupation. Its founder was a young Swiss man named Roger Schutz (Brother Roger) who, after the war, established a small monastic community which since the 1950s has drawn thousands of young people every week from all over the world to live simply and join together in daily contemplation and worship. To accommodate the wide variety of languages spoken there is very little read or spoken word and instead the whole community joins in singing simple meditative sung prayers.
The beautiful sung prayers of the Taizé community are at the core of our services in Norwich and are a way of helping a group of people to wait on God. They have been written deliberately to be simple and express fundamental truths about God. As the words are repeated, these truths can sink deeply into one’s being. Our services, which last around 45 minutes, are structured to contain sung prayers, readings and periods of silence. As the prayers and silence progress, a stillness ensues which allows the soul to focus on the love and presence of God. This gentle attentiveness to God is at the heart of contemplative prayer. There is an informal practice of the songs from around 6.00 pm to familiarise the sung prayers and we then settle into silence before the service begins at 6.30 pm. Anyone who plays an instrument is very welcome to bring it along; music can be provided ahead of time. But otherwise just bring yourself.