Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Dream and Reality

I think that the Catholic Land Movement (CLM) means different things to different people. When I began this blog four years ago I was still a school teacher staring out the window hoping. I didn't know that the original Catholic Land Movement even existed at that time. I was torn because I had to provide for my family, but all I wanted to do was farm. I wanted to dig in the dirt. I wanted to plant seeds. I wanted to see my wife and children throughout the day, and to lead them in prayers. I wanted an integrated Catholic life. In reality I desired to incarnate my faith in my life in a profound manner. I was having to separate family, leisure, prayer, and work. I wanted this to all be one cohesive whole. Ultimately, that is what the CLM is all about. I didn't know that when I started this site. I just needed to write about my dreams, and to put into words my intuitions about life on the land. My early posts were full of dreams, and I'm afraid my posts today are full of the reality of the goodness and difficulty of life on the land.

I'm sitting here typing with hands stained brownd from a hard day's work planting seeds in flats. I planted somewhere around 3000 seeds into flats today. One by one until my list for today was completed. Yet, it is not monotonous work. I work carefully and diligently and know that the time for planting is short. Soon it will be time to harden off seedlings and to plant them in the garden. The work is cyclical and each season brings its joys and challenges. Today, I was priviledged to continue living out the CLM dream. I hope I can bring to you a bit of hope. Not everything is perfect here on the plains of Southern Kansas, but this life is fulfilling beyond even what I dreamed at the beginning of this journey. There are many of you out there looking through the glass of your office like I once did. I know that it seems impossible, but truly nothing is impossible with God. Keep dreaming!

Some days I wonder why in the world God had me move my family way out here. We are truly in the middle of nowhere. GPS won't get  you to our house. (Just ask one of the several visitors who have tried this option.) In fact, even the UPS driver had to be told where we lived after she dropped one of my seed orders off at the wrong house. I've harbored a crazy hope that one day this once thriving German Catholic town would again be filled with good rural Catholics. There is still a Church with Mass, an empty school, rectory, and convent sit next door. There are several empty houses. I've thought in the past how wonderful it would be if the parish ever closed that a traditional order might take it over. Might our little town on the prairie someday become a center for a revival of Christendom. I guess I must keep dreaming too. Some days though it really would be nice to have like-minded neighbors. I don't know all the reasons I'm out here on the plains. However when I go out at night and look at the star-frosted sky I am at peace. There I can see clearly that the God who made these magnificent stars also made me, and He has a plan for me. He has a plan for you too, if only you have the courage to follow it.



lisam. said...

My husband recently set your blog to our "homepage" on our computer... it serves as a constant reminder that you (and others) are out there striving to live out an authentic catholic life. It gives us hope to know that we are not the only ones dreaming of a self sufficient devout catholic community. Please pray that we have the courage to follow God's will for our family.

Anonymous said...


Sounds like most of rural Saskatchewan and some parts of Alberta! Except... the churches lie dormant. Borded up, in some cases...

And I get the same thoughts and feelings when I drive through these "ghost towns"...

Gotta keep the dream!



Zeb said...

Sometimes I wonder if the biggest hindrance to the development of rural Catholic communities isn't that all of us who want to be a part of one also want to start our own.

Anonymous said...

Aazing. Theblessing of the Lord be with you. IwishIcould join duch a town. Is there room for an Irish Catholic aoung the German Catholics

Kevin and Mary Ford said...

Certainly there is room. I'm a mixed blood out here anyway. I have a last name "Ford" which is obviously not German, but rather Irish/English ancestry. God bless.

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