May 14: Garden Retreats Nurture Hope and Faith in God

Do you feel like you want to grow closer to God?  Benedictine Sister Angela Jarboe suggests planting a garden.

She has led numerous garden retreats at Our Lady of Grace Monastery in Beech Grove, Indiana, with positive results.  She explains that witnessing the growth of various flowers rejuvenates both the body and soul.

“Everything God creates is unique,” Sister Angela told  David Shaughnessy of the Indianapolis archdiocesan newspaper, The Criterion.  “Everything has a life cycle.  In our lives, we have to learn we are only temporary.  While we are living, we need to be images of God.”

Sister Angela has cherished a fondness for nature ever since she was a child, when she would frequently accompany her father on hiking and canoeing trips.

“I went through a period of crisis in my life,” she confided. “Hiking in the woods to see the wildflowers got me out of it.  When you’re in hard times, watching something grow gives you hope.  Christians should be hopeful people.  Hope gives life.”

I am the vine, you are the branches.  Those who abide in Me…bear much fruit.  (John 15:5)

Abba, help us to grow in physical and spiritual maturity.

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