Spiritual Life

Spiritual Life

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Sacred Text Collection

Taft celebrates the wisdom bequeathed to us from great cultures and civilizations through our Sacred Text Collection, on display in the Hulbert Taft, Jr. Library, which includes:

ŸA 19th century Torah purchased with the assistance of Rabbi Eric Polokoff and the generous support of Mr. Edgar Bronfman, said to have been brought to the Sephardic community of Tashkent (Uzbekistan) by European Jews fleeing the Nazis

ŸA replica of one of the earliest mandalas in the Buddhist tradition, presented to Taft by Tibetan monks from the Drepung Gomang Monastery, Karnataka, India

ŸAn original King James Bible, printed in the early 1600s

ŸAn exquisitely calligraphed, 19th century, pocket-sized copy of the Qu’ran, which likely made many pilgrimages to Mecca inspiring the faithful. We are grateful to U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Mr. Ford Fraker, for this remarkable gift.

If you would like to offer a sacred gift to The Taft School that represents deep meaning and value in your religious/cultural tradition please speak to the chaplain.

Education is both an intellectual and a spiritual endeavor at Taft. We believe that a sound, broad-based liberal arts education has, at its core, the quest for meaning and purpose. We believe that educating the whole person encourages and challenges us to take seriously the values and moral codes that we have inherited through our many diverse cultural and religious traditions.

Our students bring a wide range of religions and philosophical views to Taft. We celebrate and respect all expressions of faith, and look for common moral, ethical, and spiritual ground, as we covenant with one another to pursue Truth through religion, science, art, music, athletics, and in every other human inquiry.

The school provides many opportunities on campus—both formal and informal—to nurture spiritual life. Among them:

  • The offerings of the Global Service and Scholarship Department, which promote spiritual, moral, and ethical discourse among students;
  • Morning Meeting in Bingham Auditorium, a time for reflection by students, faculty, the head of school, chaplain, or outside speakers;
  • The Paduano Lecture Series featuring distinguished speakers in the field of philosophy and ethics;
  • Meditation in the Taft Living Room, a warm setting to come together in a mindful way and exchange spiritual ideas and values in a friendly and inclusive atmosphere.
  • Sunday worship, monthly Shabbat dinners, periodic Gospel and candlelight Vespers, Bible study, the Jewish Student Organization, travel to the United Muslim Mosque, Fellowship of Christians in Universities and Schools (FOCUS), and more.

Our goal is help each student find spiritual strength and community support through our religious and spiritual programs. As chaplain, I bring an understanding and celebration of the world’s various religious faiths to the Taft community.

Chaplain Robert Ganung

Worship Services (Closest to Taft)

Transportation to places of worship outside of Watertown will be provided by the Chaplain’s Office upon request.



Christ the Redeemer Church
114 Roxbury Rd (Rte 67), Southbury
Worship Service (all ages) at 10:30 am
Sunday School at 9:30 am


First Congregational Church
40 Deforest Street, Watertown
Worship Service at 10 am
Church School at 10 am


Christ Church Episcopal
Woodward Chapel
25 The Green, Watertown
Sunday Services at 10 am
Sunday School at 10 am
Centering Prayer 1st and 3rd Sundays at 6 pm

Greek Orthodox

Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church
937 Chase Parkway, Waterbury
Sunday Orthros (Matins) at 8:50 am
Sunday Divine Liturgy at 10 am
Sunday School begins after Holy Communion


Our Savior Lutheran Church
505 South Main Street, Thomaston
Sunday Worship with Holy Communion at 10:15 am
Sunday Coffee and Conversation at 9 am


United Methodist Church
305 Main Street, Watertown
Sunday Worship at 10:30 am
Sunday School at 9:15 am


Calvary Chapel Southbury
134 Main Street South, Southbury
Thursday High School and Middle School Ministry 7 pm
Sunday Celebration at 9 am and 11 am

Orthodox Church in America

Christ the Savior Church
1070 Roxbury Rd, Southbury
Saturday Vespers, 5:00 pm
Sunday Liturgy, 9:30 am


Pentecostal Assembly Church
39 Crown Street, Waterbury
Sunday Service: 11 am; Taft Pick-up 9:15 am

Roman Catholic

St. John the Evangelist Church
574 Main Street, Watertown
Saturday Vigil Mass at 5 pm
Sunday Masses 7:30, 9, and 11 am; 5 pm



B’nai Shalom Synagogue
135 Roseland Avenue, Waterbury
Sunday at 8 and 9 am
Monday-Friday at 7 am
Shabbos 8 am and 9 am


Beth El Synagogue
124 South Pomperaug Avenue, Woodbury
Friday at 7:30 pm
Followed by an Oneg Shabbat
Saturday at 9:30 am
followed by a Kiddush Lunch


B’nai Israel
444 Main St North, Southbury
Friday at 7:30 pm


United Muslim Mosque
132 Prospect Street, Waterbury
Jumua Salat Friday at 1 p.m.


Woodbury Meditation & Yoga Center
122 West Side Road, Woodbury
Sunday at 7 pm*
*Call for a full schedule of classes offered