FARMING GOD’S WAY – DIOCESE OF PORT ELIZABETH
Twenty three members from nine parishes in the Diocese of Port Elizabeth had the opportunity to attend training for home food gardens using the “Farming God’s Way’ methodology
Everyone was fascinated by the way the facilitator has presented the course it was very much interesting. Every morning the training started with such a warm and touching prayers. One of the participants was saying “What made an ordinary thing like planting vegetables (farming) magnificent was how it should be done God’s way, that approach alone changes the perception about farming”.
FARMING GOD’S WAY
The course combined theory with practical. The theory operates under 3 spheres: Biblical, management and technology. It encourages people to use what is in their disposal not to have excuses of not having. It taught us that the answer to problem of food security and poverty is in our hands, and that we encourage the dependency syndrome that we have to do away from it.
We learnt many valuable things equipping us to start farming God’s way but I will highlight those that stand out in most of us in that group:
- Soil preparation using manure, compost, wood ash and bone meal depending on your type of soil.
- Garden layout using measurements and putting permanents to guide you.
- Measurements help the farmer to yield fruit and saving time and using your compost to feed weed.
- Building your own compost heap using what is available but understanding the process and the dos and don’ts.
- Fracturing also what it is and how is it done.
- The fact that you don’t work hard when developing a food garden, you don’t plough and no need to weed your garden.
- How to use grass cuttings as your God’s blanket, to keep your soil moist, to fertilise soil and prevent weed from your garden. God’s blanket prevents soil erosion, and helps water to sink through to the roots of your plants.
- Crop Rotation around the fruity plants, leafy plants and root plants .
GARDEN OF EDEN
Everything in this course emanates from the Garden of Eden that God the 1st farmer planted the Garden of Eden from the East with everything and trees desirable and pleasing to the eye and good for food. Adam and Eve were put in the Garden of Eden to work and care for the garden but decided to sin. What the facilitator brought from this text of the Garden of Eden is to understand the 3 relationships that were built in there, the relationship of God with people, of people with plants and the relationship between God, people and plants. The different text in the bible were quoted and put into context with farming. Relating Bible to Farming was amazing and being reminded that God was the 1st farmer and he created us with everything we needed but our eyes couldn’t see.
As the church of God we always think we doing good by giving and supporting the needy not realising that we are promoting dependency, and the fact that we boldly called ourselves Christians in an unhealthy, poor and hungry community .Instead of fighting poverty we promote poor dependent community.
Our challenge, all of us who attended the training “what do we do”? How do we encourage or influence others, our brothers and sisters to change our ways, to be able to humble ourselves before God and say “ We are sorry” , we came to realise that we’ve been doing things out of our own understanding , and following the system not God our Father, the creator of all creation, the Master Farmer.
Healthy people eat healthy plants, which come from healthy soils, the living soil. Let us work towards encouraging and creating soil life as was created in the Garden of Eden, the 1st garden created by God.
The members who attended were from the following parishes
All Saints in Kabega (4 reps), St Augustine in Walmer (2 reps), St Stephens in New Brighton ( 2 reps), Holy Spirit in Kwazakhele, Seyisi ( 3 reps), St Cyprians in Emagaleni Kwa – Zakhele ( 3 reps), St Peters in Zwide ( 1 rep), St Timothy in Motherwell (3 reps) and that includes the Parish priest Revd Lobese,, St Matthias in Motherwell (5 reps), and the St Matthews in Kwa –Magxaki ( 1 rep).
We are very grateful for the support of Green Anglicans and the United Thank Offering for this training