This blog is a special plea and invitation for young adults ages 18 to 35 to sign up for the Taize “Pilgrimage of Trust” that will be held at Whites Chapel UMC, April 4-6! You may do so by going to the Central Texas Conference Website www.ctcumc.org.
A truly great blessing in my time as bishop of the Central Texas Conference was a leadership trip that I took with a group of young people from the Conference to Taize, France. Through the leadership of Rev. Larry Duggins and the Missional Wisdom Foundation, we have developed a relationship with this inspiring ministry.
By way of background: “The Taizé Community is an ecumenical monastic community located in the small village of Taizé, France. The Brothers are from twenty-five countries and from various Christian denominations. Together they seek to live a parable of community and reconciliation. For more than forty years, Taizé has become a place of pilgrimage for tens of thousands of young adults from all over the world. At Taizé, they take part in weekly meetings that are organized by the community.”
Last June in reflecting on my Taize experience I wrote a series of four blogs (entitled “COME HOLY SPIRIT). In the first I shared, “As I soaked in the experience of Taize, I discovered myself going through a spiritual detoxification. The challenges, struggles, and problems of life and of my work as bishop did not disappear. Rather they are put in perspective as I take time to open myself to the Holy Spirit. In one sense, this is not new at all. I hardly needed to travel to France to experience the importance of music, silence, and scripture in my Christian walk. In another, greater sense, I feel like a desperately thirsty man staggering in from the desert and being offered a cold glass of refreshing water. Steve Bryant’s (the former editor of the Upper Room) maxim that most of us do not go to the high places enough once again rings true in my life. I (we!!!!) need time for spiritual detoxification from the world’s constant bombardment.”
Those who attend will bless themselves and others richly in the grace of God and the love of neighbor through this great spiritual happening. It is not taking place in France but right here in our Conference. (God bless you Whites Chapel and the Missional Wisdom Foundation for hosting!) It is not just for Methodist but for all young adults (18 to 35) who see a relationship with living Lord.
Next Tuesday I will continue a series of Lenten blogs on the cross.