Pope Francis has called us to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Encyclical Laudato Si (16th May-24th May) and the Global Day of Prayer (24th May).
Sister Albert takes care of the planet by disposing correctly of all waste
For this week celebrating nature encouraged by Our Holy Father’s Encyclical to rejoice in the natural world around us we share some of the natural beauty of our garden and two of our gardeners who have contributed to the beauty we see.
Marian was missing tending her garden after she moved into the home jumped at the chance offered her by John the gardener to help him nurture the flower beds in front of the fish pond and the strawberry patch planted
around an old tree stump. She has taken her responsibilities very seriously and is out in the garden every day carefully watering the plants.
The rabbits too are enjoying the garden and all the dandelions that every visitor who passes their enclosure brings to them. They will anything else they are eating if they even get a whiff of dandelion. There is not one left
in their immediate vicinity and one sister (Sr. Jarlath) reported she had to go much further looking for them afield as the rabbits were asking for dandelions when she went to feed them their regular food.
The fish too are thriving and have trebled in size since coming to their new home last summer.
I have been an Independent Resident here at St Peter’s Residence in the heart of London for the past seven years. It is a life of new beginnings.
I have always loved plant life. At St Peter’s the garden is full of colour all year round. I feel the indoor corridors resemble Kew Gardens! Probably an exaggeration but they have the same standard of beauty.
Pawel our Polish gardener has created such beauty.
At the time of the Coronavirus crisis and lockdown us residents from both the independent and care sides, have so appreciated sharing the progress and growth over the past months of the ongoing new life. Pawel also has made many bird houses which he has installed around our vast garden plus small box houses for garden insects to multiply. He has made the garden a nature reserve. He grows his own plants from cuttings.
I have learnt so much from Pawel. While the Coronavirus is playing havoc with our lives, Pawel has lost the voluntary help he received from Giovanni who is a member of the St Vincent de Paul Society. So I now help Pawel by tending to the two indoor corridors plants. I so enjoy this privilege. To me plants are living creatures!
In March 2019 I was distressed to see the plants at the Oval Underground Station in desperate need of care. I asked the Station Manager if I could tend them. He welcomed me with open arms. He was fed up with the complaints of passengers about the neglect of the plants. So up to January 2020, I resuscitated the many large plants. The staff were wonderful to me and most helpful. On two occasions Mother Jacinta allowed Pawel our gardener to help me by pruning the plants and giving them his professional attention…….. and so they flourished. Last summer the Oval Underground Station won third prize in the annual competition for the best kept Station. They had never ever won a prize before!
Working together in this way became a community project. It brought new friendships. Now I am no longer able to tend the plants, so Kathy a member of the Oval staff has taken over. She phones me periodically to let me know the progress of the plants.
The Borough of Lambeth are sympathetic towards the environment. Nearby we have two small nature parks, cared for by volunteers from the community. These parks are a haven for the people and wild life.
Working in this way together has brought a greater awareness of the growth of new life, not only for the environment but for relationships with our fellow man/woman