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New Neighbors, Please

"It is our neighbors who are killing us," a colleague recently said. Initially, I felt internal resistance. Surreal was the moment as I Instinctively I held my breath while trying to process this statement. "Our neighbors are killing us." Murders take place in Baltimore City almost daily. Some days there are multiple murders. The city I love is a dangerous place to live, work, play, and worship. A year ago this month a friend was murdered, gun downed, in from of her home by her next door neighbor. Her death by a violent act of her neighbor is still raw. Are there solutions? What might be the solutions?

As a Christ follower, I propose creating the change desired by investing in the spiritual development people. Mark's Gospel (Mark 12:28-31) provides a guide. When Jesus was asked which commandment is the most important, he response was to love God and 'love your neighbor as yourself.' Perhaps the change will come, the murderous hemorrhage in my beloved Baltimore will be stop if each of us do what we can. To this end, comes the notion of connecting self and others to God as creator. Use practical means and practical alternatives to live our best life in harmony with others and nature.

Baltimore has public parks, basketball courts, swimming pools, tennis courts and golf courses. And quiet as it is kept, community gardens are throughout Baltimore.

Community gardens are my niche. They provide a direct way to use plant life to connect neighbors with creation as well as each other. Community gardens are pathways to building vibrant life giving neighbors who develop healthy relationships and share ideas. Hand in the soil, waiting for seeds to grow roots takes self-discipline and a sense of hope. Self-discipline and hope can be the foundation for new neighbors. Perhaps, just perhaps spending time with each other in a garden might create space to love ourselves and our neighbors. I along with others are committed to trying. You are welcome to come grow with us.

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