On the Way to Taize
"There is a great moment when you see, however distant, the goal of your wandering. The thing which has been living in your imagination suddenly becomes part of the tangible world."-Freya Stark, from The Art of Pilgrimage.
Today we travel to Taize.
In some ways I know little about this place, yet I am spending a week of my life there, sight unseen. I've spent no small sum of money to get to this place I do not know, having crossed an ocean and a couple continents in the process.
I have felt tremors emanating from this place. First it was the word Taize itself; distinct, memorable, and a bit mysterious. Then I experienced a service for myself and found it extremely beautiful and helpful in bringing me into the presence of Christ.
Once I became conscious of this place, I began to see fingerprints of its effects in unexpected places. I began to hear stories of people who'd visited. It turns out my spiritual director spent two weeks there and considered entering the process to become a monk. In a time of transition and vocational seeking another friend went there hoping to live at Taize for a year or more, only to be turned away and set on another course. On my recent pilgrimage across Scotland I met a man who went to Taize during his youth for ten summers, greatly influencing his faith and life. I also continue to run across many little bits of Taize music incorporated into liturgies and songs.
So today, I'm following these little crumbs back to their source. I now sit in a speeding train, moving me ever-closer to the epicenter of these stories and songs. What is this mysterious thing that draws me and countless others to this place?
Whatever it is that has set me in motion has now accomplished its goal. Today I arrive at a place unknown, but dreamt of. Today is an arrival, when what has only been envisioned in my mind's eye will becomes known by sight. I will have a story of my own, as will my sister. And so the stories from this place will continue to ripple outward, their effects ever expanding.
I'm excited to see what the Spirit has in store for us in this place, and this time, and this particular life.
------ Questions to Ponder: -Have you ever been drawn to a place for reasons you cannot fully articulate?
-Is there a place you currently feel drawn to?