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Associate Professor/Landscape Designer Heads to the City of Angels for the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books

"Love is the essence of our true calling. A sense of contemplation rooted in the Word of God is necessary to encounter the sweet Mystery and Divine Lover. Once you are silent, He will sing to you.”
— Andrea Oliva Florendo
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES, April 18, 2023/ -- Andrea Oliva Florendo’s Romance of the Enclosed Garden is a book that invites readers to explore the story of the Bridegroom and the Bride, as depicted in the Song of Songs. Readers may be surprised to know that it is a story about the Incarnation, and its characters are Christ and the Virgin Mary. Christ is identified as the Church and Mary, who is seen as the first Bride, serves as a model for each believer. The book is set to appear at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books slated for April 22-23 at the University of Southern California as part of Bookmarc Alliance’s exhibit.

Andrea Oliva Florendo draws on her experience as an artist and designer of devotional Mary Gardens to explore the idea that the earth is a manifestation of God's word, and that every experience with the earth can lead to a deeper understanding of God's love. This belief was sparked during a pilgrimage to Anzio, Rome, where she heard a whisper instructing her to learn about God's word through the garden. Her contemplation of the Song of Songs in her book
serves as a reminder that love is the essence of our true calling, and that a sense of solitude rooted in the word of God can lead to an encounter with the sweet Mystery and Divine Lover. In a world of aridity and sexual exploitation, men and women are more vocal in expressing their thirst for the Word of love and life. This book serves as a human response to divine love.

Andrea Oliva Florendo, M.A., DDA, author of Liturgy of Flowers in a Mary Garden is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Theology and Religious Studies, at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, St. John's University. She runs a Mary Garden Guild at the Immaculate Conception Monastery, and a Mary Garden Academic Service- Learning with her Mariology classes on campus.

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2023LA Times Festival of Books | Featuring | Romance of the Enclosed Garden by Andrea Oliva Florendo