Today we remember BLESSED MARIE-LEONIE PARADIS, most holy saint, from a family struggling to make ends meet, working a flour mill in the village of L'Acadie in Quebec.
We have winter wheat growing in the Emerald Street Garden, beside the greenhouse. It is our cover crop, protecting our soil from the erosions of winter, fighting weeds, and adding valuable nutrients mixed in with legumes that fix nitrogen. This wheat is transformed into flour, transformed into bread, transformed into the body of Christ . Discard the bran.
Milling technology has led to many great developments in society, wind power, water power, the backbone of harnessing the energy around us. We have a breadoven by the Greenhouse, made of natural materials collected around Camden, and made without any powertools. I pray that blessed Marie-Leonie Paradis will help us go from seed to table utilizing the mill and the breadoven.
Appearently I can take Bible texts to understand the process of going from Wheat to Flour, I have yet to find them, but I am consulting a Biblical Scholar on this. The Winter Wheat will be harvestable in June, when it turns a golden color. We will tie them into bundles and make "shocks." They will be threshed inside a barrel, beating the stalk against the sides. The grains fall during the threshing process, and we will use the straw for our own mulch adding nutrient matter back into the soil. The winnowing process is seperating the wheat from the chaff, or tiny pieces of straw. Pour the wheat from one container into another in a stiff breeze (or by the greenhouse fan). Then take the wheat to the mill. THis crushes it into the flour. I have until June to find a good and cheap mill. I will start on the internet to find myself an appropriate mill, one to buy, or one to make. There are bicycle-powered mills. I look forward to this continued intersection of COmmUnion with the land, and breaking bread with our neighbors. The eucharist is created with one of humanity's most eminent and prominent innovations.
When the mill didn't work out for Mr. Paradis MARIE-LEONIE's father he decided to leave Quebec to mine for gold. He returned to find his precious daughter had left for the convent. After teaching in schools all over the world, she started her own order, The Little Sisters of the Holy Family, to serve priests in household care.
Some of the best bread bakers I have ever known are the ladies that have worked in Father Michael's House, the rectory of Sacred Heart.
The bread is made in the Hearth, the heart of our household, the core, the center. And at Sacred Heart the holyeucharist grows in our garden.