Profiles in Catholicism
 
An Interview with Katie Kennicott
 
by Gordon Nary

 





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Gordon:
 
 

When did you and you husband Harrison join Assumption
 

Katie:   1999  Our son was married there.

Gordon:
 
 

Could you give us some background on when and why the Assumption Garden Club was formed?

Katie:




 
 

The Garden Club formed in 2010 when some landscaping was needed to cover ugly grates on the side of the church.  Father Joe mentioned it to me and the garden grew.  So many people that move to the city miss “ playing in the mud”.  The word went out that we needed help.  It took one Sunday to sign up 40 workers,  (Men and women).  Friends from the Washington Bulb donated 5000 daffodil bulbs to get started.  The annuals came from purchases at plant sales.  We have no particular theme.  We just wanted to have lots of color and variety.    My family is in the floriculture business, but this garden is our personal donation to the community and to the parish.
 

Gordon:
 
 

How many Assumption parishioners are currently in the Garden Club?
 

Katie:
 
 

About 40.
 


 
 
 
Gordon::


 
 

The Assumption Garden is a beautiful and even spiritual oasis in River North where many people will stop by during the spring and summer to sit on the benches, eat lunch, and even meditate inspired by the beauty of the garden I understand that every week people just go to the Assumption office to compliment the staff on the garden.  About how many hours a week are devoted to devote to maintaining the garden? 
 

Katie:
 
 

About 10 or 15.  We sometimes go over there to visit,  have coffee and plan
 

Gordon:
 
  I understand that Abdullah Khad|ijah who is not a member of Assumption and belongs to another denomination has been
been helpful in maintaining the garden
.
     
Katie:   Abdullah has been great, but now that he has his own responsibility, he spend less time with us.  His garden will be beautiful when
he finishes with it.  (You never finish with a garden).
     
Gordon:   My favorites section of the garden is Bridget's garden which was dedicated to your granddaughter who suffers from the
incurable
Batten Diseas
e. Here is a photo of the lovely Bridgit being cared for by her brother Harrison.
     
    untitled-4896 (2)
   


Here a beautiful website that provides an overview of Bridget's struggle with this disease and how or readers can help.
and
I hope that everyone who reads this interview will pray for Bridget every day

I understand with some upcoming church construction, part of Bridget's garden will be removed and transferred to another church.
Could you explain what is planned?

     
Katie:  

Bridget’s Garden will be moved to the other side of the property.  We will keep it beautiful.  It is a labor of love and a fitting tribute to a brave little girl'

     
Gordon:















 
 

Although there are more that 125 passages in the Bible on gardens which I could use to close this interview, I prefer Voltaire's Candide
which contains a powerful metaphor about gardens and the meaning of life.  Candide was adapted to an operetta by Leonard Bernstein
which closes with this metaphor in a song titled Make Our Garden Grow.


Gordon:
 
 

In closing, I would be remiss if I didn't congratulate you on your 2014 Chicago Archdioceses’ Christifideles Award for service to the life of the Church.
You not only make our garden grow
, but also our hearts and souls grow with love and an appreciation of life and beauty.