27 September | Exploring Lake Bled: A Glimpse into Slovenia’s Rich Culture

An important part of the European meeting preparation process is getting to know the people, faith and culture of the host country.
One of Slovenia’s most iconic landscapes, as many of you may have already seen online, is the famous Lake Bled with its even more famous island in the middle, featuring the Church of the Mother of God.

Lake Bled’s church was first built in 1142, then rebuilt in Gothic style in the 15th century, and following a strong earthquake was thoroughly renovated in early Baroque style. Surviving the damages of a second earthquake, its final form has been preserved since the 17th century.
The main altar in golden carving represents the sitting Mother Divine.
In the church’s tower there is a ‘wishing-bell’ with a famous legend behind its creation, saying that whoever rings the bell and makes a wish will have it fulfilled . Don’t forget to try it out =)

To get to the island you will need a boat, or in case of good swimming skills you can enjoy the fresh waters of the lake to reach the place. Many people visit, not just tourists but also local people who take pride in this island that belongs to their parish.

20 September | Meeting in Stična

Upon arriving on-site, one of the first programs for the preparation team was to participate in the youth meeting in Stična, which is a symbolic place in the history of the relationship between Taizé and Slovenia. It was in the year 1981, after the economic situation of young people in the former Yugoslavia had become more difficult, and their travel outside of their country had become challenging, that Brother Roger’s visit took place following an invitation from the newly appointed Archbishop Alojzij Šuštar. The choice of this Cistercian monastery also took into consideration the fact that young Croatian neighbors could easily access it.

The Stična meeting has changed significantly over the years, but the concern for welcoming young people from all backgrounds has remained very present. In addition to countless personal encounters among the more than 4000 young people from various regions of Slovenia and beyond, everyone could find something in the program that resonated with them. In the morning, there was an outdoor Eucharist celebration - with an invitation announcement for the European meeting! - followed by afternoon workshops on a wide range of topics, and then concerts featuring various musical genres in which young participants took part.

In the weeks to come, we hope to meet many of our new friends again!

17 September | The preparation team in Ljubljana

In the last couple of months, many underground works have been completed, and hopefully, you’ve already seen some of the results on social media platforms. As the preparation team arrived in Ljubljana one week ago, a new stage begins. The team consists of 9 young people [] from various countries, including Brazil, Scotland, Latvia, ... and even Slovenia - not to be confused with Slovakia, which is also represented in the preparation team…

In the team there is a couple from Switzerland, two sisters of Saint Andrew and three brothers from the Taize Community.

From now on, we will do our best to regularly keep you updated on local news regarding the preparation. We will provide you with ideas for your preparations and help you get to know the country that will host you better. We will also share updates regarding the meeting program, and soon we will provide you with the registration interface, which you can start using from October 1st.

11 March | Our online presence

Many of you have noticed that our online presence is intensifying week after week: the first videos on YouTube [ 4wh taizeljubljana], photos on Instagram [], and links on Twitter [] and Facebook []. It’s up to you on you to find out what interests you in connection with the preparation!

From today, the local preparation has a dedicated page: [], which you can consult for news concerning the preparations on site.

If you come from another country, keep an eye on the section ( []) where you can find information about the program for participants.

25 February | Volunteering: The first three working groups

Thanks to a fruitful collaboration with KANA, the youth pastoral office of the Archdiocese of Ljubljana [], should be three working groups have been established. These groups consist mainly of young people who attended the Rostock meeting and are now eager to help prepare for the welcome of young people at the end of the year.

- One group will focus on the animation of common prayers, offering their knowledge and experience to help prepare welcoming common prayers.

- Another group is handling logistics, scouting potential places of welcome within a 45-minute train or bus ride from the Arena Stožice.

- In addition, a team is dedicated to the question of communication, exploring ways to involve and invite more people to the meeting and its preparation, including those who may not share the Christian faith but are interested in reflecting on the meaning of life and the common good of society, and who are also eager to connect with people from different backgrounds and perspectives.

Printed from: - 3 October 2023
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