BLC Tree Planting - 31 Jul 2016

At BLC, we are learning how to worship God by appreciating His handiwork in nature as well as to grow in discipleship through our role as stewards of creation. This led to the creation of our BLC Community Garden last year. Yesterday, we continued to grow in this space as we planted two trees, as an act of worship.

The first tree we planted was dubbed the “Luther Tree”. This tree was planted as part of the global Lutheran World Federation (“LWF”) celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in 2017. This act is inspired by a quote ascribed to Martin Luther

“Even if I knew that the world were to collapse tomorrow, I would still plant my apple tree today.”

Via LWF:

As a means of giving expression to the 500 yeas of the Reformation, the Luthergarten (Luthergarden) has been established in Wittenberg on the grounds of the former town fortifications. In connection with this project, 500 trees will be planted at different places in the city region, giving a concrete sign of the optimism so clearly expressed in Luther’s apple tree quote.

Churches from all over the world and from all confessions are being invited to sponsor one of the 500 trees to be planted in Wittenberg, and at the same time to plant a corresponding tree in a place that is significant for their own church.

Our Luther Tree is actually a Neem Tree that was found, abandoned and ignored, on our grounds. The Neem Tree is treasured, especially by the Indian community, for its medicinal properties. We are particularly glad to have redeemed this tree and given it a place of honor – beside the footpath our parishioners walk on as they come to church.
The other is the BLC Tree, a wild cinnamon tree, a gift from Ben & Vanessa, who wanted to encourage us to appreciate plants that are native to Malaysia.

 

Besides helping at the Tree Planting ceremony, the children also were given seedlings to sprout before being transplanted into our community garden today!

 

As we were planting the trees, Pastor Sivin read from Revelations 22:2

“On each side of the river grew a tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, with a fresh crop each month. The leaves were used for medicine to heal the nations.”

Interestingly, Anand discovered that both the Neem Tree and cinnamon have healing properties and said, “We have planted a pharmacy today at BLC.”

All of this is a humble picture and reminder of God’s continued to work in our lives: even if we were initially abandoned and ignored, or whether we are just “here” – native, to our environment, as it were – His grace restores us to a place of honor so that we can channel God’s healing to the world around us.

Check out our full photo album from that day here:

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