Maryland Friars Weed Gardens, Root Out Sin

HNP Communications Friar News

SILVER SPRING, Md. — During Lent, Lawrence Anderson, OFM, Hoan Dinh, OFM, Francis Di Spigno, OFM, Joseph Macaluso, OFM, Hugh Macsherry, OFM, Stephen Mimnaugh, OFM, (pictured, right) and Lam Nguyen, OFM, from Holy Name College here joined the Sierra Club to help root out invasive plants species in Little Paint Branch Park in nearby Beltsville.

As the friars pulled out periwinkle, garlic-mustard and other plants not native to the region, they reconnected to the earth, recalling the Lenten discipline of rooting sin out of their lives.

The March 28 event began with Morning Prayer at Holy Name College. The psalms of the day recalled God’s love and action in creation and the human relationship with both. The reading came from the Assisi Compilation (88), calling on the brothers to leave space for nature to have its way. A reflection on the readings recalled Pope Paul VI’s promotion of work as a means of solidarity and participation in God’s creative activity, Hugh said.

The friars enjoyed the opportunity to work with other service groups from the University of Maryland and MaryPIRG. In true Franciscan fashion, they chatted as they worked and shared a lunch prepared by Fadi Azar, OFM, Francis Critch, OFM, and Erick Lopez, OFM.