Cologne Remembers Brother Roger of Taizé

Cardinal Meisner Joins Young People in Prayer

COLOGNE, Germany, AUG. 18, 2005 ( Cardinal Joachim Meisner, the archbishop of Cologne, recollected himself in prayer with young people from the Community of Taizé to remember Brother Roger Schutz, who was slain Tuesday.

News of the murder of the founder of the France-based ecumenical Community of Taizé by an apparently mentally unstable woman has been a psychological blow for many of the 400,000-plus participants at World Youth Day.

Heiner Koch, secretary-general of World Youth Day, told journalists Wednesday that Benedict XVI expressed a desire to commemorate Brother Roger in Cologne somehow. The Pope arrived today in Germany for the events.

Cardinal Meisner prayed for Brother Roger in St. Agnes’ Church in Cologne on Wednesday, where the Taizé Community meets to pray three times a day.

The cardinal knelt for a long time in the center of the church, amid the silence and candles of many young people, who sang the well-known hymns of Taizé on their knees.

At the end, the archbishop of Cologne went in procession to sign the book of condolences placed next to a photograph of Brother Roger.

“You have passed through death and the transit from one world to another,” wrote the cardinal in German. “Now, Brother Roger, you are in good hands, and you can impose yours from on high on all the young people.”

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