First Sorrowful Mystery
The Agony in the Garden
There is a sign that is often seen in garden, especially where a person of faith is the gardener: “You are nearer God’s heart in a garden, than anywhere else on earth.”
The setting for the first human story in the Bible is a garden: the Garden of Eden. In this place God first interacted with humans.
In the New Testament after the Last Supper Jesus leaves the Passover crowds in the city of Jerusalem to spend agonising hours alone in the Garden of Gethsemane.
The following day Jesus is buried in a garden tomb and from that tomb in that garden that he is raised from the dead.
Gardeners understand that gardens are places of creation, of life, of death and of resurrection.
The one who tills the earth knows the seasons, and delights in how the colours of autumn lead to the apparent death of winter, the new life of spring, and the abundant foliage and flowering of summer.
Gardeners understand life, and keeping your hands in the soil makes it much easier to keep your feet on the ground.
Perhaps this is why Jesus, knowing that suffering and violent death was immanent, didn’t indulge with the partying Passover crowds, but faced his fear acknowledging his reality in his Agony in the Garden.
As we pray this decade of the Rosary let’s enter the Gethsemane scene engaging each of your physical senses: As you sit in that garden on the evening of Holy Thursday, what can you see, touch, taste, hear and smell.
Do not be afraid of your own fear. Unite your fear with the agony of Jesus.
And like the gardener remember that what looks like winter, dark, cold, barren and alone, is (when in the company of Jesus) a stage in the journey to resurrection which doesn’t happen on demand but in God’s good time.
- Bishop Robert Barron leads The Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary. at this link.
- Follow the CREATE EVENT link at the bottom of this page to initiate a cafe or bar gathering in your own town, and visit the VIEW CALENDAR link to see if there are gatherings near you.