Blessing of animals

September and October have become traditional months for blessing of animals services. The proximity to the Feast Day for St. Francis of Assisi, October 4, is often the impetus for holding these liturgies in the Fall. The Episcopal Church is providing bulletin inserts for Sunday, October 4 and some congregations have made the blessing an all day event.


Episcopal Life Weekly bulletin inserts for October 4 mark the connection between blessing companion animals on the Feast of St. Francis and providing the blessing of animals for families in impoverished communities through Episcopal Relief and Development's Gifts for Life program. The inserts outline how Episcopalians may provide animals such as goats, chickens and bees that can make the difference between poverty and self-sufficiency for a family.
To download bulletin inserts, click here.

Trinity Episcopal Church in Lander, Wyoming held a blessing of animals in the City Park, September 12, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The blessings continued throughout the day and festivities included information booths with representatives of Lander Pet Connection (organization for finding animals a home), House of Tails (grooming and boarding), Feisty Fido (grooming and boarding), Photo Express/Wind River Awards, Lander Llama, Wyoming Game and Fish, among others.
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What does your church do for Blessing of Animals? Add your story.

Comments (3)

I'll be blessing animals at the local humane society shelter in the afternoon (Rutland County Humane Society) -- parishioners bring their companions to add to the mix. In the past there have been llamas and goats. Each animal will receive a certificate of blessing. And after blessing the animals that already have homes, I will bless those in the shelter waiting for their forever home.

Great photo of Ann and friend.

The Cathedral of St. Paul of Erie, Pennsylvania, has celebrated the Feast of St. Francis with a Blessing of Animals service for over 15 years. In 2008, the service expanded into an all-day festival including a petting zoo, performance by our Children's choir, food, games and displays by local pet organizations such as the Humane Society. Our congregation and the community responded overwhelmingly, and our plans for October 4, 2009, are greater still. The Blessing of Pets is one of our most popular and well-attended events of the year.

On Saturday, I will bless animals at a local no kill shelter. On Sunday, we will dedicate our new St. Francis (Scatter) Garden at the end of our second service. At 2, we will bless animals in our outdoor chapel.

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