Taizé (Tay-zay) prayer is a style of Christian worship that combines song, scripture,
silence, and intercessory prayer. It often takes place in a candle-lit setting around a
cross. The style is based on the communal prayer of an ecumenical community of
brothers in Taizé, France, whose lives are dedicated to living the gospel message of
peace and reconciliation. The meaning and practices of Taizé have spread throughout
the world. In Fresno, there are currently four venues where monthly Taizé services are
held. You are cordially invited to attend any or all of them. (Click here for schedule.)
Taizé is a tiny village hidden away in the southeast corner of France. In 1940 Brother
Roger Schutz, the son of a Calvinist minister, came to Taizé to live his dream of founding
a community dedicated to Christ and the gospels.
It was wartime. For two years, Brother Roger lived alone. His house became a place of
welcome for refugees, especially Jews, fleeing from the Nazi occupation. By 1949 seven
brothers from different Christian denominations had joined him. They made a life
commitment to live together in joy, simplicity, and mercy as a parable of community and
as a sign of reconciliation, centering their lives around daily communal prayer.
Today the Taizé community of more than 80 brothers is not only ecumenical, but also
international, with its members coming from countries throughout the world. They
conduct three prayer services daily and lead Bible discussion groups and retreats.
Gradually, young adults began coming to Taizé in ever increasing numbers, resulting in
the brothers starting annual, week-long “Councils of Youth” held in different European
countries and now, in other countries around the world.
The spirit of Taizé prayer is to maintain the integrity and focus of its late founder and his
followers in the quest to achieve world peace and reconciliation by creating a place of
spiritual communion for all people.
Prayer services in the style of Taizé