The Taizé community in eastern France has denied claims reported in the French newspaper Le Monde that its Swiss-born Protestant founder, Brother Roger Schutz, who died last year, had made a secret conversion to Roman Catholicism.
An estimated 12,000 Christians from many denominations attended the funeral of Brother Roger, the Protestant founder of the Taizé community in the picturesque Burgundy region of France. Presiding over the funeral Eucharist was Cardinal Walter Kasper, the Vatican’s top ecumenical officer.
The enormous ecumenical impact of the Taizé community, with its haunting music and its tradition of silent prayer and meditative chant, is astonishing given that the community never promoted itself. No doubt many American Christians who have made the pilgrimage to Taizé had to suppress their initial disappointment at its unprepossessing buildings and casual presentation.
Almost everyone engaged in the search for Christian unity has at some point received important impulses from the Taizé community. And whoever speaks of Taizé is bound to speak of Roger Schutz (1915-2005), whose intuitions and initiatives turned the community into a focus and center of the ecumenical movement.
Brother Roger "one of the best-loved Christian leaders of our time"
Sep 06, 2005
The death of the 90-year-old founder of the Taizé Community in France at the hands of a woman wielding a knife shocked world Christian leaders.
Roger Schutz was killed August 16 as he prayed during a gathering of 2,500 young pilgrims at the community’s center in Burgundy. Police arrested a 36-year-old Romanian woman thought to be mentally ill.
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