Saturday, April 08, 2006

Giving to God through Gardening

As a gardener, I loved a story I found this morning through CNS - I'm hoping to find some time today to buy and plant the start of this year's flowers. About Passion Flowers, Wikipedia states: "The plants were named for the Passion of Christ, because the flower structure seemed symbolic of Jesus' scourging, crowning with thorns, and crucifixion." Here's the story:

For Milwaukee man, passionflowers symbolize his own resurrection

MILWAUKEE (CNS) -- The exotic passionflower is said to tell the Easter story of Christ's crucifixion, but for a Milwaukee man the flower is also a symbol of his personal resurrection. Dick Wuchte's journey to the Catholicism of his youth had several detours, but eventually brought him to the northwest side of Milwaukee, where he moved next door to a devout Catholic and prolific gardener, Marion Wicen, in 1978. He had little interest in Wicen's pride and joy, thriving passionflowers which bloomed on the east side of her house each summer, or in her faith life. But both remained a constant. Wuchte, 59, returned to the church after a 30-year absence sparked by pain from the Vietnam War and addiction. He's now fully recommitted to his faith, and said that has made all the difference. Wicen died in November 2004, but last summer Wuchte said her passionflowers bloomed more vigorously than ever. With the permission of Wicen's family, Wuchte has planted cuttings from her plants in hopes his yard will be graced with the flowers that seem to tell the story of Christ's crucifixion. And Wuchte knows the story doesn't end with the crucifixion. He said he is proof that a resurrection follows.

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