Genesis Farm's Grove of the Founders is dedicated to the lives of five men who helped shape the mission of Genesis Farm. Their many gifts live on in Genesis Farm, inspiring and guiding us forward.
The grove was designed and installed by Maggie and Christopher Alexander with the help of an international group of volunteers.
The grove is defined on its far side by a beautiful stream that ebbs and flows throughout the year. Originating from underground springs located in our wetlands, this stream joins the Paulinskill River which, in turn, flows into the Delaware River on its way to the Atlantic Ocean.
Each founder has a sacred and dedicated site within the grove. A photo of this site is included in the descriptions below.
Frederick Franck (1909 – 2006) was a painter, sculptor, and founder of Pacem in Terris, a trans-religious outdoor sculpture garden museum located in Warwick, NY. He donated several sculptures to Genesis Farm, including the one here that commemorates his life, called “Original Face.” Frederick's work, “Icthus,” resides in the gardens next to the farmhouse.
Gerald Mische (1926-1995) was the founder of Global Educational Associates, and authored, with his wife Patricia Mische,Towards a Human World Order. He was an early advocate for international human rights, world peace, and the pursuit of justice through international law and the United Nations. Gerry is remembered in our grove with this beautiful ginko tree.
Saint Dominic (1170 – 1221), a Spanish priest and the founder of the Dominican Order, committed his life to liberating others from economic and spiritual poverty. The Dominican Order, also known as the “Order of the Preachers,” is known for its work on education, outreach and social justice. Genesis Farm is a project of the Dominican Sisters of Caldwell New Jersey.
Thomas Berry (1914 – 2009) was a cultural historian, Earth scholar, Catholic priest and “geologian” whose lectures, essays, and books convey the importance of the Universe Story and define the Earth Literacy movement. The tree in the grove, pictured here, is a direct descendent of the giant red oak that shaded Thomas’s office for many years. Thomas himself started this tree from seed.
Wally Burnstein ( - 1996) was a beloved physician and environmental and political activist. After realizing that his patients could not heal if they were constantly exposed to toxins, he founded the nonprofit Food and Water in 1984. They campaigned fearlessly against food irradiation, garbage incineration, GMOs, the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. A wooden post, embedded with stones, honors Wally's life.