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Growing in Virtue: Gardening and the Soul

It’s almost Mother’s day, and soon time to plant the vegetable garden! I believe gardening is good for the soul. It’s been man’s work since the beginning of time (Gen 2:15), and something about seeing the fruits of our efforts of physical labor is incredibly satisfying.

Waiting and watching plants grow is truly an exercise in patience. As one of my less abundant virtues, waiting two weeks for those tiny seeds to germinate and sprout above the soil seems like an eternity. Time to sprout. Time to grow. Time to flower. Time to produce fruit. And all the while, it still needs care: water, sun, good fertilized soil. Slowly, over many weeks, the plant matures: a gentle reminder that God works according to His Time.

A garden can bring forth many virtues: patience, diligence, industriousness, gentleness. Today I’d like to share with you an opportunity for one more: generosity. This spring, a Lehigh Valley chapter of “Plant-a-Row” has just started! Plant-a-Row encourages gardeners to dedicate one row of their garden to help feed the hungry, offering several donation locations to drop off produce for local food banks and soup kitchens.

Check out their website at

May you grow in virtue this season, and happy gardening!

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