Brother Alois leads Taize service at Westminster Abbey

 There was a sea of candles at Westminster Abbey on Saturday evening during the 'pilgrimage of trust on earth' Taize service, lead by Br Alois from Taize, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor and the Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams. In his reflection on the reading from Jeremiah 31:31-34, Dr Williams spoke of the 'foolhardy God' who has placed his trust in humanity "even when we let him down again and again." "If we can begin to let that message of trust into our hearts how differently we start to treat one another," he said. After speaking of his "great joy" at being in England, (this was his first visit as Prior of Taize) Br Alois said: "Peace begins within us. When we pray we need to ask for a heart of peace. Brother Roger used to say - 'sometimes words are not needed' - a single sigh can be a prayer' ."Christians have the specific gift to open up pathways of peace and trust with others," he said. "We need to turn towards God every day" he said. "It is through small acts, through perseverance day by day that we can bring change." Describing the Bangladeshi community where Taize brothers have been working among the poorest Muslims and Christians for that past 30 years, he said: "One mother of a disabled child who was so poor she used to collect banana skins to feed her goat still brought some money to the common purse." "Let us dare to move towards unity among all Christians" he said. "In a world where violence is trying to get the upper hand we can be a sign." Jo Siedlecka

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