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"One is Nearer God's Heart in a Garden Than Anywhere Else on Earth."

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It’s finally here ... gardening season. How I love to get out in the sun and warmth, listening to the birds singing their songs and feeling the dirt between my fingers! My garden is my retreat house, my place to connect with God in the ordinariness of my life.

I think that’s why these two books here in the Archdiocesan Resource Centre spoke to me in such a deep way...

Pegge Bernecker's Your Spiritual Garden: Tending to the Presence of God is a six-week retreat in daily life designed to release the inner gardener in all of us. Using Scripture, prayers, meditation, physical and communal activity, as well as participation in the Eucharist, Bernecker teaches us to tend our spiritual garden and ultimately cultivate our relationship with our "Master Gardener."

Meditating upon how interaction with the earth opens the heart and embraces the A Mystic Garden by Gunilla Norris affirms the garden as a soulful space where people can take root and experience the changing seasons and the enduring cycle of renewal. Filled with the joy of living, this enchanting spiritual guide will speak to those who yearn to find the holy in the place they call home.

However you spend it--in the garden or not--enjoy your summer for what it is ... God's gift of rest and relaxation!

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My dear friends, I try to go around and visit our Catholic Schools as often as I can. I find there is something special there. I talk with people who are involved in Catholic Education about why this is. It usually comes round to thedifferencethat is found in our schools compared to other schools. The difference is found in the way we deal with and treat the children and young people who come to us to learn. That difference comes directly from the faith that all of you who staff our schools and offices have within you.

Dear friends, we set out today on a great adventure for our Church here in Regina as we begin the Formation Program for the Permanent Diaconate for our Archdiocese. I consider this to be a blessing from God and I say “thank you” to God for all of you who are candidates and for you wives who journey through this time of formation with you. You have acted positively in response to what is a call from God and I pray that the four years ahead will bear much fruit for you and for Jesus Christ and his Church.

My dear friends , we gather once again on the eve of the Assumption of Mary to give honour to Mary, the Mother of God; to give voice to show our devotion and our love for this unique woman whom Jesus, her son, has given to us to be our mother, and to celebrate the  Eucharist, to say “thank you” to God for all the love and all the blessings God has given to us, especially through the intercession of Mary, our mother.