Story by Sara Paul
It was a rowdy, furry congregation on Sat., Oct. 13, as Christ Church in the Village of Warwick celebrated the annual Blessing of the Animals on its South St. lawn.
Dozens of four legged friends brought their humans to The Feast of St. Francis event, which honors St. Francis of Assisi, the 12th century patron saint of animals and the first to organize a live Christmas nativity scene.
“Bless them who curl themselves around our hearts, who twine themselves through our days, who companion us in our labor, who call us to come and play,” commented Father James “Jim” W. Erwin, Jr., as he, alongside Mother Deborah Lee, bestowed blessings (and Milkbones) to the mostly canine crowd. There was but one kitty in attendance.
The full mass and Eucharist included a reading from the Book of Genesis, proclaiming, “… God made the wild animals of the earth of every kind, and the cattle of every kind, and everything that creeps upon the ground of every kind. And God saw that it was good.”
Fr. Jim impressed upon parishioners the similarities of a pet’s adoration for their masters and how that love can be similar to how people can love God.
“They wait for you at the door…at the foot of the bed, and they think you hung the moon… and I think they represent for us a little bit of the position that we should look at God with,” said Fr. Jim.
For more information about Christ Church, visit https://christchurch.org/.