Discovering Taize, August 20, 1940

Human beings only create by drawing on their poverty.  I am well placed to assert that today:  it is exactly thirty years ago that I discovered Taize.

Br. Roger of Taize, from his Journal August 20, 1970
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The Beauty of Listening

More often than ever before young people ask me, “What is the most beautiful thing in your life?”  Without hesitating I reply:

  •  first of all the common prayer, and in it, the long periods of silence.

Then, immediately after that, the most beautiful thing in my life is this:

  • when I am talking with someone alone, to perceive the whole human being, marked by a tragedy or by being torn apart within, and at the same time by the irreplaceable gifts through which the life of God in that person is able to bring everything to fulfillment.

It is essential to try to comprehend the whole person… It is not enough simply to share what assaults a person within.  It is even more vital to search for that special gift of God, the pivot of their whole existence.  Once this gift (or gifts) has been brought to light, roads forward lie open.