“Good people bless and build up their city” (Prov. 11:11, NCV)
John Calvin CRC in Truro, NS, has the incredible blessing of excess land. Over ten years ago, the church’s Justice League (a group of members concerned with local justice issues and stewardship) began dreaming about how to combine the assets and resources of the church with their local community while addressing food insecurity and promoting wise, environmental stewardship.
Located behind the church, the Glenwood Drive Community Garden is now a shared space for all who enjoy the beauty of nature; growing their own food, or just getting their hands dirty!
The garden first opened in 2013 with about a dozen families from both the church and the surrounding community coming together to grow food, flowers, and friendships together. Ten years later, the Glenwood Drive Community Garden has close to 50 plots, including raised beds for accessibility and an average of 30 families gardening (most of whom are not church members).
Watch their story here:
What makes this Garden stand out?
Sometimes churches can think they have all the answers and resources. It’s important to note that this garden would not have happened if it weren’t for the community members who had a passion for and a know-how of gardening or without the multiple community agencies that provided grants and tangible supplies to make the garden what it is today.
Another lesson learned is that while churches (and deacons) can tend to focus only on NEEDS in their community, it is important to see the ASSETS and OPPORTUNITIES as well. Every single person in our church and in our local neighbourhoods has gifts and ideas to offer. When we make ministry PARTICIPATORY and COLLABORATIVE, we see the Kingdom of God at work in beautiful ways.
Does your church want to come together with your local community?
Not sure where to start?
Diaconal Ministries Canada offers some great workshops and resources to help churches get beyond the needs-based, scarcity mindset to an ASSETS-BASED, abundance approach!