Blessing of the Animals set for Oct. 5 at Philippi & Christ Church
“Can we bring emus?” asked Zoar’s Amy Bull, a member of the Deltaville village youth group, when she was told about the third annual Blessing of the Animals service at Philippi Christian Church on October 5 at 6:30 p.m.
“Do you have an emu?” asked Pastor Mike Cook of Philippi.
“Maybe we could find one!” Amy answered.
The service is held in honor of St. Francis of Assisi, who was known for his deep reverence for all of God’s creation, and particularly for animals. Everyone in the community is invited to bring any animal they wish to be blessed by the presiding pastors.
“We do ask that everyone make sure their animals are under control, on a leash or halter or in a carrier,” said Pastor Cook.
This year the service will be co-led by Philippi’s associate pastor Rev. Dr. Lewis McPherren, and Clarksbury’s new pastor Rev. Eric Vaudt.
“Our kids are really excited and we’re hoping lots of other kids will come and bring their animals,” said Pastor Vaudt.
The service will be followed with a fellowship time with refreshments for both two-legged and four-legged attendees.
Christ Church to hold ‘Blessing of Animals’
On Sunday afternoon, October 5, at 4 p.m., Fr. Paul Andersen will commemorate the Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi by conducting the annual blessing of animals.
St. Francis considered the animals to be important parts of God’s creation and called for people to respect and honor that part of the creation as part of their respect and honor for God.
The brief service of prayer and blessing will be conducted at the church gates. All are invited to bring their pets or, if their pet is deceased, a photo or memento of that pet.
Christ Church Parish (Episcopal) is located in Christchurch at the intersection of Routes 33 and 638 adjacent to Christchurch School.