Michael Woods, Gonzaga Professor and Local Food Advocate Authors "Cultivating Soil and Soul"

Awhile back I sat in as a guest in a class taught by Michael Woods at Gonzaga. In our conversation I learned that he was on the board of the Main Market Co-Op and had written his dissertation on the intersection of Catholic liturgy and agrarian life. When it comes to Gonzaga I tend to think of basketball and forget about the vital intellectual cultural engagement that goes on there.

Here's a good review of the book.

The book begins with these words;

In a 1960 interview, Msgr. George "Alfalfa" Hildner, a priest of the St. Louis archdiocese, was quoted as saying: "Plowing straight up and down the hills is like stabbing into the back of the soil. I told the farmers that they would receive absolution for any sin they confessed, but God help them if they confessed plowing straight up and down the hills.

...That is to say, soil and souls possess a unique affinity through which Christ's redemptive mission is expressed and lived out according to the church's liturgical and sacramental life...Christ's redemption was experienced in the working of the fields as well as through the celebration of the church's liturgy.

Amen to that from a this low-liturgy Presbyterian.

Picture: Wildflowers taken earlier this week at Liberty Lake.