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  • Ash Wednesday Taizé Service

    Taizé chants + prayers + imposition of ashes

    Wednesday, February 22, 2023, 7:00 p.m.


    Live in-person and live streamed from the stunning Ripley Chapel at First Congregational Church, Winchester. First Congregational Church offers a poignant and meditative Ash Wednesday service, featuring the ecumenical prayers and music of France’s Taizé community. All denominations are welcome.


    As Lent begins, please join us for this simple service – of Scripture, prayer, silence, meditative singing, and imposition of ashes – modeled after the rich and beautiful Taizé tradition. Our ministers will guide us in prayer and silence; voice, violin, cello, flute, and piano will lead beautiful songs and chants, as a reminder and celebration of God’s love and forgiveness. This special tradition is a “parable of reconciliation and community.”


    The service will include the imposition of ashes on the forehead or the back of the hand: “Remember that you are dust, and unto dust you shall return.” The ashes are prepared by burning palm leaves from the previous year’s Palm Sunday celebrations. They are offered as a sign of humility and self-examination.


    What is Taizé? Simply put, a small village in France, near to Lyon. The Taizé community is a uniquely ecumenical monastic order with a strong devotion to peace and justice through prayer and meditation. The 100-strong community of Roman Catholic and Protestant monks is drawn from 30 countries across the world. From its beginning, the community has been inspired by two aims: to live in communion with God through prayer and song and to be a leaven of peace and trust in the midst of the human family.


    As the Taizé community tells us,

    “To open the gates of trust in God, nothing can replace the beauty of human voices united in song. This beauty can give us a glimpse of heaven’s joy on earth. An inner life begins to blossom within us.”


    The worship service will be both live and live streamed. For more information or for the live stream link, please visit www.fcc-winchester.org or contact Jane Ring Frank at 857-919-0983 or at jringfrank@gmail.com.