"The garden as God's handwork
is a rich source of inspiration,
because in it we encounter God the Creator in His creation.
The basis for understanding the Mary Garden
is through it's devotional meanings.
Symbolism is the system that provides the meaning.
As we resurrect our ties with the natural world,
We become more open to receive the Divine
constantly at work in the rhythm of nature,
and in us.
We will know when the connection comes to fruition.
We find the little green shoot of our beginning,
we operate in joy, and like a flower, we unfold beautifully."
Romance of the Enclosed Garden
Be In Love!
How often does love inspire us to sing? What song does Scripture sing
if not the poetic incantation of the sublime word of God ---
the Song of Songs?
In Romance of the Enclosed Garden,
you are invited to enter and a courtship, betrothal,
and a wedding blossom before you.
The story of the Bridegroom and the Bride seems at first glance a
lover’s quest. You may be surprised to know that it is a story about the Incarnation, and its characters are Christ and the Virgin Mary.
Speakers in the Song are identified as Christ and the
Church, or the loving soul.
Mary, who is seen as the first bride, a type of Church,
serves as a model for each believer.
Andrea Oliva Florendo draws on the intimacy of a nuptial hymn
and testimonies of early Fathers and saints to hear the Song’s message:
God loves us passionately like a bridegroom loves his bride.
Human love whispered in and through the context of marriage point to the divine author and echoes Christ’s love for the Church.
Florendo’s contemplation is a refreshing reminder that love is the essence of our true calling.
A sense of solitude rooted in the word of God
is an encounter with the sweet Mystery and Divine Lover.
Once you are still and silent, He will sing to you.
Be prepared to be wooed, pursued, and loved totally!
Let's Take A Walk in the Garden
“It is in the context and metaphor of an enclosed garden of the Song of Songs that I speak in this book. Why a garden?
A garden is where lovers go. Communion with God is a reunion of love. The world we live in begun in a garden. It is in that paradise garden of Eden that life was made possible. Hence the whole Christian life is one of pilgrimage to this garden of love.”
“While beauty and truth sustain the universe, love sustains our beings. The only paradise we need to know is one where we can learn about the Father’s love - the ever-flowing, ever-green unfolding of the Divine in us.”
“Love is the essence of our true calling. A sense of contemplation rooted in the word of God is necessary to encounter the sweet Mystery and Divine Lover. Once you are silent, He will sing to you.
Be prepared to be wooed, pursued and loved totally!”
About the Author
Andrea Oliva Florendo, M.A., DDA, author of The Liturgy of Flowers in a Mary Garden
is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Theology and Religious Studies,
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at St. John’s University.
A visual artist and landscape designer, she runs a Mary Garden Guild at a monastery,
and coordinates a Mary Garden Academic Service- Learning on campus.
Ms. Florendo is a harpist and Practitioner of Harp Therapy.
With her husband, Romulo Florendo, M.D. on the violin,
she has recorded a CD entitled: The Enclosed Garden.
She calls Fresh Meadows in Queens her home.
Click here to know more about the author.
The Liturgy of Flowers