Pysanky and Taizé
Слава Ісусу Христу! Glory be to Jesus Christ! Man, was Monday ever a busy day! First off that morning was our biweekly Mommy's group. While the Moms have their session upstairs in the Boardroom, a couple of us provide childcare in the church's basement. Because the Moms were writing pysanky (Ukrainian Easter eggs) that morning, I thought it might be a good idea to have the kids colour some pysanky colouring sheets that we could then cut out and use as an Easter display on the bulletin board upstairs.
Though all the children didn't want to colour (that big, empty basement is simply too tempting not to run around it), we had some dedicated artists that went full throttle on the colouring front:
I'm so excited to see how the bulletin board turns out this week!
The morning finished, it was time to get ready for our next event of the day: Taizé worship. If you don't know what Taizé is, it is actually a place in France that is home to a community of spiritual brothers who commit themselves to "a life together in great simplicity" (Taizé website). The worship that arises from their community is known as Taizé worship and, in short, consists of meditation on short, repetitive song phrases and Scripture. Icons are also an integral part of this kind of meditative service.
St. Nicholas' former Youth Director, Ivanka, introduced Taizé worship to the community here, as yet another way to connect with our Lord, Jesus Christ. Though I hadn't had much experience with Taizé (other than a short experience crashing a worship service at Mount Mary Christian Retreat Centre), I thought it was a good idea to continue what Ivanka started. The more options you have available for parishioners and others, the better I think.
I knew I would need some backup, because of my lack of experience with Taizé, so I got in touch with Michael, one of the parishioners I had grown up with who is very musically inclined and worked with Ivanka on bringing Taizé to St. Nick's. Together we were able to come up with a bit of a plan as to how the music would work through the evening and which Scripture might be appropriate. We also set up the nave in a way we felt would be conducive for meditation and reflection (i.e. lots of candles). We also had Fr. Julian on standby in case anyone wanted to go to Confession in the last few days before Easter.
It was a small gathering (Michael, Fr. Julian, another lady and me), but we did what we had set out to do and it was beautiful in its own way. Peaceful, meditative, and full of God's light. I'm looking forward to sharing this experience with more people next time, but for now this evening felt just right. Onward to Easter!
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