SSU Summer School–2019–Week Two– The Garden of Eden

“God saw that it was good.” (Genesis 1:18)



For Parents to Teach to Their Children


Summer Flowers


Glory Be to the Father

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end.


Message to Parents

This week is about the beauty of summer. What a wonderful season. I admit, I’m spoiled. Having lived all my life until, November, 2018, in sunny, temperate  Southern California. Our son, Father William Goldin, drove us in a rented twelve passenger van, across the country with two dogs and a macaw into Southern Florida. Were we daft? (Yes!)  How about lucky? (Indeed.) Florida (which means “flowery” in Spanish) is beautiful, verdant, colorful, and has fantastic wild birds.

Most of all, it has our grandchild and future grandchild en route.

As I write this post, I think about how much fun it’s going to be to share the art activities for this week with my own grandkids as they get older. The art project this week is painting flowers (and painting with flowers) and it is fun, messy, and produces wonderful results.

The readings today talk about the beauty of the Garden of Eden. Psalm 23 is a beloved psalm that has a hint of summer in the line, “In green pastures, he makes me lie down.” We are blessed by the wonder of God’s creations!


“You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your

heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.

This is the greatest and the first commandment.”

(Matthew 22:37-38-NAB)

Source: Little Acts of Grace Page 27


Readings for Children

“The Garden of Eden” (Genesis 2:8-9)

“The Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east,

and placed there the man whom he had formed.

Out of the ground

the Lord God made grow every tree that was delightful to look at

and good for food, with the tree of life in the middle of the garden

and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.”

( Continue Reading on )


Psalm 23

A Psalm of David

“The Lord is my shepherd,

there is nothing I lack.

In green pastures, he makes me lie down;

to waters he leads me;

He restores my soul.


He guides me along right paths

for the sake of his name.

Even though I walk through the valley of

the shadow of death,

I fear no evil, for you are with me;

your rod and your staff comfort me.


You set a table before me

in front of my enemies;

You anoint my head with oil;

my cup overflows.

Indeed goodness and mercy will persue


all the days of my life;

I will dwell in the house of the Lord

for endless days.”


Source: First Communion Bible Saint Joseph Edition


First Communion Bible

A Reading for Younger Children

“The Beautiful Garden” An Excerpt

“God made Adam, the very first man,

in his own image. He creates for him the

beautiful Garden of Eden, a marvelous

paradise filled with green grass, colorful

plants, and wonderful trees. God told 

Adam that he might help himself to fruit

from any of these except for one;

the tree of knowledge. There were still

plenty of other wonderful things for him

to eat.

God brought all the animals and birds

to Adam for him to name. None of the

animals were like him, and Adam was

lonely, so God created a woman, Eve,

to be his special friend and companion.

They had no clothes to wear, but that

didn’t bother them at all.”

Source: The Illustrated Bible for Little Ones Page 11

The Illustrated Bible for Little Ones

Note* This is a charming book for very young children, that is not specifically Catholic. The illustrations are wonderful and children love them.


A Prayer for Young Children

“Praying to the Angels”

“Angel of God, my guardian dear,

to whom God’s love commits me here,

ever this day be at my side.

to light and guard,

to rule and guide.”

Source: Little Acts of Grace Page 11

Little Acts of Grace

Celebrating Through Song

“Morning Has Broken”

Hear the Tune Here!


1 Morning has broken
Like the first morning,
Blackbird has spoken
Like the first bird.
Praise for the singing!
Praise for the morning!
Praise for them, springing
Fresh from the Word!

2 Sweet the rain’s new fall
Sunlit from Heaven,
Like the first dewfall
On the first grass.
Praise for the sweetness
Of the wet garden,
Sprung in completeness
Where his feet pass.

3 Mine is the sunlight,
Mine is the morning,
Born of the one light
Eden saw play.
Praise with elation,
Praise every morning,
God’s re-creation
Of the new day!

Source: The Song Book of the Salvation Army #35

A Video of “Morning Has Broken” By Judy Collins

Our Art Project

Flower and Leaf Prints

Common “Safe” Flowers-Touchable, Smellable, and Non-Toxic

The goal of the art project is for participants to think about and visualize the overwhelming beauty of the Garden of Eden, and to paint what they imagine.

This project requires washable children’s tempera, white paper (preferably watercolor paper for strength) paper towels, paper plates for dipping flowers into paint, and flowers and leaves. Gather a few of the safe (non-toxic) flowers, like those mentioned above, and some leaves- celery, basil, parsley, magnolia, citrus, even fruits and vegetables, etc. Place several paper plates on a table, each with a good squirt of paint. Set out the flowers and leaves for the children to paint with. Show your child how to dip a flower in paint, then use it as a stamp, which is pressed down upon paper. Younger children may enjoy simply covering a flower with paint (fingers are fine!) as an art piece in itself. The child that painted the painting below also used a foam flower as a stamp. I love seeing the yellow and orange circles made by the dipped sunflower.

Older children will take this to a beautiful, more sophisticated level and make wonderful prints on their own!