Mixed format for Taizé European gathering
By Lisa Zengarini
For the first time in its history, the annual European Meeting of the Taizé Community is taking place in a mixed two-phase format, due to the COVID-19 pandemic: from 28 December 2021 to 1 January 2022 it is happening online, while the in-person event is scheduled to take place in the Italian city of Turin from 7 to 10 July 2022.
Pilgrimage of Trust on Earth
The ecumenical event gathering thousands of young adults between 16 and 35 from all over Europe for a “Pilgrimage of Trust on Earth”, is traditionally held at the end of each year in a European city. This 43rd edition was originally scheduled in Turin in 2020 , but was postponed for 12 months because of the pandemic.
However, the latest wave caused by the contagious Omicron variant of the virus has forced organizers to reschedule the in-person meeting to July next year, when participants are expected to stay with families and in parishes of the Archdiocese.
Frère Alois in Turin
Only a limited number of Taizé brothers, including the Prior, Frère Alois, and young people from the Piedmont Region are attending in person the event which was officially launched on Tuesday at Taizé headquarters in France, and can be followed on the Community's YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/taize.
Evening prayer with the Holy Shroud
Among the highlights of this first meeting, is a prayer session with Brother Alois in front of the Holy Shroud in St. John’s Cathedral in Turin on Wednesday evening at 8,30 p.m. Participants will also be given the opportunity to contemplate the relic in the evening of December 30.
The Shroud of Turin is believed to be the burial cloth of Jesus and is exhibited to the public only on special occasions. It is a woven linen cloth bearing the negative image of a man who seems to have been crucified. It is believed that the image was implanted on the cloth by some mysterious means at the moment of Christ’s resurrection. The last public exhibition (Ostention) of the Shroud took place in 2015.
Also featured in the Taizé Meeting are workshops including two live-broadcast workshops focused on solidarity with migrants and on taking care of our common home. A peace march scheduled for New Year’s Eve has been cancelled due to the pandemic.
Message from the Archbishop of Turin
In a letter addressed to the Community of Taizé and to participants, Archbishop Cesare Nosiglia of Turin shares his deep regret for the postponement of the in-person meeting He thanks the Taizé brothers, subscribers, local authorities and parishes and families in the Archdiocese for their efforts to make the event possible in spite of all the difficulties which have marked the past year or so.
The Taizé Community
The Taizé Community is an ecumenical Christian monastic fraternity based in the French town of Taizé, in Burgundy, and composed of Catholic and Protestant brothers. It was founded in 1940 by Roger Louis Schutz, a Swiss Protestant monk, popularly known as Frère Roger, who served as its first prior until his murder in 2005.
Taizé has become one of the world's most important sites of Christian pilgrimage, with a focus on youth. Over 100,000 young people from around the world make pilgrimages to Taizé each year to pray, study the Bible, share their faith experiences, and do communal work.
The annual “Pilgrimage of Trust on Earth” at the end of the year has been organized since the early seventies gathering thousands of young people.