Thursday, October 16, 2014

Urban Gardening

At 4 pm I shut myself in my office, with the challenge of writing at least one, if not two academic papers for the Urban life together mission conference in Melbourne this weekend. It looks a fantastic event, encouraging mission reflection among grassroots practitioners.

I wanted to explore the potential of urban gardens for the mission of the church. A few hours work and I have some 2,800 words ready to go. I’ve woven together two film reviews, some of my research into local stories of inner-city urban churches doing garden mission, spiritual practices of composting, a consideration of the shady side of spirituality, some Maori proverbs, interaction with a range of Bible texts in God’s garden, gratitude for the wisdom from Julian of Norwich and Fred Bahnson’s Soil and Sacrament: A Spiritual Memoir of Food and Faith.

Here’s my introduction:

Some gardens are planted in straight lines. They are orderly and linear. Other gardens are planted higgelty pickelty, random and inter-connected. Some academic presentations are planted in straight lines. They are orderly and linear. This presentation is neither straight nor linear. Rather it is random and in the higgelty pickelty you are invited to make the inter-connections with your urban context ….

Which leaves the powerpoint, but there is always the early morning flight over.

Posted by steve at 10:20 PM


  1. Sounds like a great intro to me. However, I thought it was higgledy, piggledy! But then you New Zealanders always talk funny!
    I’m sure it will be a great talk no matter how you pronounce it. Best of luck!

    Comment by Jo Smalbil — October 16, 2014 @ 11:00 pm

  2. Spelling. Is that a linear, predictable concern? 🙂


    Comment by Steve — October 17, 2014 @ 9:03 am

  3. This NZer knows that Jo is correct 🙂

    Comment by Jan — October 17, 2014 @ 3:00 pm

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