By Ruth DuCharme

"Holy, holy, holy, my heart, my heart adores You! My heart is glad to say the words: You are holy, Lord." We concluded our last Taize service with this song of adoration. When the song was over no one immediately got up to leave. There was a stillness and quietness that no one wanted to disturb. There was a need to linger a bit longer in God's presence. It was a holy moment.

Highland Hills began holding monthly Taize services in January of 2010. Since then many have found their way to this service of prayer, song, Scripture, and silence. It has become a time of renewal and retreat for those who have participated. Someone attending Taize for the first time once stated to me that they had never been alone with God like that before. For them, it was a holy moment.

Taize services were begun at Highland Hills to provide worshipers a chance to pull away from the busyness of life and to retreat into God's presence for awhile. It is a service where there are no expectations. The mood is set by dim lights and burning candles. There is music that is meditative, and you can choose to sing along or just sit and listen. There are prayers that are spoken and prayers that are offered in the quietness of our own hearts. There is communion. There is silence. There are holy moments.

Taize services will continue to be offered on the third Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. in our chapel. I encourage you to give it a try if you have never attended. If it just doesn't fit into your schedule or just doesn't feel like your kind of thing, I encourage you to find your own way to be still in the presence of God. Try setting aside just a few minutes to sit in a favorite chair and breathe in God's goodness. Try taking a walk and feeling God's presence in the sights and sounds around you. Try offering up a favorite hymn as you ride along in the car or as you go about a daily chore. Find your moments when you can offer back to God the gift of your time and presence. I think that you will find them to be holy moments.