People from all over Houston gathered at Villa de Matel in the Immaculate Conception Chapel to participate in the Taizé prayer service, which honored Sr. Adeline O’Donoghue who passed away one hour before the service on April 26, 2019.

by Sister Kim-Phuong Tran

On Friday, April 26, many people from the Houston Metropolitan Area gathered at the Immaculate Conception Chapel at Villa de Matel to participate in the Taizé Prayer service honoring Sr. Adeline O’Donoghue and led by Sr. Kim-Phuong Tran through the Vocation and Young Adult Ministry. More than 200 people were in attendance.

Taize’ was first brought to the Ruah Center at Villa de Matel 20 years ago by Elizabeth and Al Turner. Both are American History professors living in Houston. Elizabeth and Al practice the Baptist faith tradition, have a great passion for Taizé prayer and are good friends with the Taizé community in France.

Sr. Adeline O’Donoghue, former Director of Ruah, welcomed the Turners and a few other Taizé friends to Ruah years ago and began with simple prayer sessions using Taizé music on cassette tapes. This year’s Taize’ was dedicated to Sr. Adeline, who passed away one hour before the service and those in attendance were asked to remember her in their prayers as the service began.

In the years following the inception of Taizé, the group grew larger and outgrew the Ruah space, so Sr. Adeline began holding the service in the Villa Chapel. Elizabeth continues to coordinate the music program along with Bridget Wenk, music director at Christ Redeemer Parish. Al volunteers and hands out the Taizé booklets. About five years ago, Sr. Adeline transitioned the leadership of the Taizé prayer service to the Vocation and Young Adult Ministry since, “Taizé prayer draws many young adults throughout the world,” she said.

Taizé spirituality promotes reconciliation and communion with brothers and sisters of all faiths. A community which nurtures deep appreciation of silence, Taizé music calms and draws one into the appreciation of God’s most powerful language – silence. 

We remember that Christ still suffers in us, in our families and in our brothers and sisters everywhere. Christ, our healer gathers us. Christ, who is our Hope of Glory gathers us. He heals us and strengthens us for the work of ministry. Following the prayer service, refreshments were provided at the Villa Dining Room along with remembrances of Sr. Adeline. Praised be the Incarnate Word.

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