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Franklin - Local Town Pages

Growing a Community

Apr 29, 2021 02:33PM ● By Chuck Tashjian

St. John’s Church, at 237 Pleasant St. in ranklin, will soon build a good news garden similar to one in neighboring Medway, shown here. All are welcome, and the garden will help supply the Franklin Food Pantry with fresh produce.

Franklin Church Plans Community Garden for Food Pantry; All Welcome
By J.D. O’Gara
St. John’s is building a garden, and its Franklin neighbors are invited to be part of it. 
May will kick off a lot of activity on the grounds of St. John’s Church, at 237 Pleasant St. Deacon Maggie Gellar is heading up The Good News Garden Project, a project which began with a small garden bed last year, during Covid, to supply the Franklin Food Pantry with some fresh vegetables. Four new wooden raised beds will be added this month alongside the small bed.
“It really did become a whole parish sort of project last year,” says Gellar. “There would be people who’d come to weed or fill barrels, and they knew they had to keep away, but they were so excited to see each other. It was a way to do something as part of a community, so hopefully it will be bigger and better this year.”
Families are encouraged, with careful Covid-19 protocols to sign up to:
Construct a raised bed (materials supplied)
Help haul garden soil to fill a bed
Enclose raised beds with fencing, including in-bed plant supports
Place lining on paths between beds
Help plant seedlings
Water beds/weed gardens as needed during thegrowing season
Harvest and deliver fresh produce to Franklin Food Pantry early on Tuesdays and Fridays
Gellar has experience creating such a garden. When she was Deacon at Christ Church in Medway, “We built four wooden raised beds in the front yard of the church,” she says. “The idea was to have a garden that would be a church project that would also provide some donations of fresh produce to the food pantry. 
Although Gellar has moved on to St. John’s, in Franklin, her former congregation is still operating the community garden.
“The thing I liked about it was it was definitely a community project,” says Gellar, adding that neighbors to the church were interested in the garden and welcome to participate. “The rule is, if you come and help with it, it’s your garden, too. My whole thing is connecting people and making things be about us and not a we/them sort of situation.”
Gellar explains that St. John’s Church school will begin the seedlings, and “in mid-May, we’ll gather and build the gardens.” Vegetables will be planted the last weekend in May.
Gellar notes that the planned garden will support something that matters to the Franklin community, and it will encourage camaraderie not only among church members, but also between the church and its neighbors.
“We will invite the people who live in the neighborhood and let them know if they want to work in the garden, they are welcome,” says Gellar.
To sign up as an individual or a family, visit

For more information, contact Maggie at [email protected], (508) 277-1032.
For more information about St. John’s Church, visit .