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TAIZE PRAYER SERVICE – 26th February 2021

This was the first time the Mérignac-St Augustin Ecumenical Group had gathered for a Taizé prayer service since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Around 30 people sat well-spaced around the Temple in Mérignac. The service was led by Pastor Eric de Bonnechose, with Father Vincent Garros accompanying the chants on the guitar, while I took care of running the Powerpoint, which had been adopted to reduce waste and avoid potential contamination via paper service sheets.

The theme was “Avoir faim et soif de Dieu” – “Hungering and thirsting after God“.

We started with Psalm 42″

As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul longs after you

and then Psalm 63

You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you“, and heard readings from Isaiah 55, “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters;

and John 6

I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” interspersed with silence and Taizé chants.

We concluded with Revelation 22

Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.”

The blessing was from the Iona Community and our final chant, in English:

The Kingdom of God is justice and peace
And joy in the Holy Spirit
Come, Lord, and open in us
The gates of your kingdom

Exchanges and joint prayer with our brothers and sisters from other denominations have been an important part of my Christian journey since I arrived in France, over 40 years ago, and I strongly encourage all of you to join me on the next occasion. We have different traditions and “flavours”, but we all drink at the fountain of the Holy Spirit and follow Christ our Saviour on the road to salvation.

(Christine R. 21/3/2020)