One of the best features of St. Anthony’s is the natural world that surrounds us here. There is a peacefulness here on the grounds, and a sense of awe and wonder in creation that helps us connect with the Creator. Moreover, the nature of these things is important in our daily lives, and it can teach us much about God, the creator of all.
The trees, flowers, all the plants, even weeds, add beauty to our little corner of the world. The varied nature of these things reminds us that God appreciates diversity. This beautiful nature of these things is especially evident in the summertime when the trees are full and the flowers are blooming, but there is also a beauty in the snow and ice coating the empty limbs, in the emerging green of spring, and in the myriad of colors on the trees in fall. The ever-changing nature of these things also reminds us growing and dying are both a natural part of living.
The abundance of our vegetable garden, berry bushes and fruit trees is a part of our life here, too. The nutritious and flavorful nature of these things remind us of the goodness of God. They nourish and sustain us, not only in the growing season but also into the fall and winter with any produce that can be preserved for later consumption.
The birds, deer, turkeys, turtles, woodchucks, squirrels, chipmunks and all the wild creatures here also add to our world. The trusting yet industrious nature of these things remind us God will provide for all our needs if we are also willing to put forth effort. Their playful and carefree nature brings joy to our hearts and reminds us of the joy and pleasure that God sees in all creation. The willing nature of these creatures to live in harmony with each other and with us remind us it is possible to get along with others despite our differences.
For all the lessons and blessings that come from the nature of things all around us, we say Deo Gratias!