Beautiful weeds


It was in the summer and autumn of 1989 that we visited Assisi.  We stopped off at Santa Maria degli Angeli and visited the basilica there which is built around where Saint Francis died.  From there we walked up to the walled city of Assisi looming above us.

It seemed to be a place totally given over to tourists where the main street was filled with shops and hardly a person we saw looked local. My story starts with our visit to the small church of  Saint John.  I was captivated by the peacefulness and looked lovingly at the  beautiful plain wooden beams and ceiling joists. We walked out and entered a walled garden where I noticed a couple off to my right.  We turned left and then right along a wall toward the hillside.  Of a sudden, I noticed a large vase of plants.  They were not flowers nor were there any blossoms or any especially beautiful distinguishing features.  Yet, I was overcome with love for these plants.  I focused on them as we approached and I touched them lovingly.  My feelings were so strong and I was amazed and somewhat shocked by the strength of my emotion for such an ordinary, neglected pot of what I would have called weeds.  How could weeds draw me and evoke such loving feelings?

As I looked up and over to the right, It came to me that I would build a church and my church would be a garden.  This garden has not yet been manifest but I have plans for it.

Over the last 25 years, I have often remembered the sights and feelings around that afternoon at Assisi.