Rev. Meredith Heffner blessing Jay Dey, with Sam and Viji Dey, at the Blessing of the Animals at St. James Episcopal Church last weekend.
Photo by Deb Stevens.
St. James Episcopal Church invited people to bring “leashed or crated pets” for a special service of blessing and thanksgiving for our pets. Episcopalians celebrate the Blessing of the Animals on a Sunday close to the Feast of St. Francis, which falls on Oct. 4. St. Francis of Assisi was well-known for his love of animals. Stories tell of him preaching to flocks of birds, dissuading mosquitoes from biting him and even convincing a wolf to stop stalking humans and livestock in Gubbio, Italy, where he once lived. At the Blessing of the Animals, people remember and emulate Francis’ example of love for animals and appreciation of God’s creations.