This prayer space is open to the public for the purpose of personal meditation, prayer, and reflection as seen in the life and works of Venerable Solanus Casey, Capuchin. It's filled with plants and features to enrich your time here.
The garden's stone arch displays the words "Ask. Seek. Knock." These are the same words at the entrance of the Solanus Casey Center in Detroit, where you're also invited to visit. They characterize the way Solanus lived his life, reassuring those burdened with cares of all kinds that "everything is going to be al right." And much to the relief of the multitudes who came to him, everything was all right!
The grape vine and three clumps of grain near the archway commemorate Fr. Solanus' first celebration of the Eucharist here at St. Joseph Church over 100 years ago.
If he were canonized today, Fr. Solanus Casey would be the first native-born male in the United States to be recognized as a saint.
The focal point of the garden is a bronze statue of Solanus Casey created by Russian sculptor Sergei Metrofanov. It depicts a young Solanus at the age he said his first Mass at St. Joseph Church. One hand is extended, offering a loaf of bread. The other hand is raised in blessing. The gesture has a dual relevance. First, to Solanus Casey's ministry of feeding the poor in the streets of Detroit. Second, to his gift for feeding people spiritually, offering Mass, and quietly listening to people and praying over them. And offering you deposit in the box located here will be used to feed the poor.
A biblical garden features plants that are specifically mentioned in the Holy Bible. Because many biblical plants grown in the Mediterranean would not survive in our climate, the garden also incorporates additional plants from the lost language of plants. Long ago when illiteracy was commonplace, people would convey their sentiments to others with small posies or "tussy-mussies," each flower or leaf representing messages such as "I'm after your heart" or "Stay away from me." The language of plants was also used in the stained glass windows of churches, fabrics and other art. Recalling the monastic life, many of the herbs stand for virtues such as wisdom and healing. Note: Text in italics at the end of the description for each plant listed here give its antique significance and relevance in the lost language of plants. In the form of a broken earthen vessel, a small water feature invites you to ponder the many references to water in the Holy Bible - thirsting, quenching, refreshing, washing and giving life. There too His love is compared to a river washing in every direction over everyone on earth. "But now, O LORD, You are our Father, We are the clay, and You our potter; And all of us are the work of Your Hand." (Isaiah 64:8)
For $100 each, engraved walkway pavers are available to commemorate baptisms, weddings, life of loved ones, anniversaries, or any other suitable message. Proceeds go toward the ongoing work in the progress of this garden. Order forms are available online or in the parish office.
To learn more about Father Solanus Casey, visit the Solanus Casey Guild Website.
To see more photos of the Solanus Casey Prayer Garden, visit our Photo Gallery.