Monday, April 25, 2005

Gaudent angeli
Some people watching Pope John Paul II’s funeral Mass noticed and posted online that Brother Roger (Schutz), the founder of the originally Protestant experiment in monasticism at Taizé-les-Cluny, France over 60 years ago, received Communion.

It turns out that he is now a Roman Catholic! (This article confirming it is in Spanish.)

(He’s Swiss and originally belonged to the Reformed Church — Lutheran and Reformed men co-founded Taizé.)

In a way that’s not surprising as by its nature (Christian life that’s Godward, communal and liturgical) Taizé has had many Catholic elements in it. I love their recorded music as something devotional — it uses repetitions and even Latin! Probably thanks to its age I’ve always associated it with the legitimate liturgical movement more than the Novus Ordo. (Even though its longtime member Max Thurian, also a Protestant to begin with, was an adviser at its invention — he later became a priest.) Going to a couple of Taizé-style services left me cold but of course I like that they use candles and icons including the crucifix.

IIRC part of his inspiration for Taizé was his mother telling him that during World War I, I forget in which country (France?), she found peace one day visiting a Catholic church. The Divine Presence in the Reserved Sacrament probably had something to do with it and she probably didn’t realize it at the time.

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