Blessing of the Animals I

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This morning I debated about going to church.  I do so love having an entire day at home and it is rare I get one.  But I know how I am in the morning: grouchy, negative, pessimistic.  Mornings are not a good time for me to make decisions, so I followed my rule of thumb: it is best to go to church.

What a good rule that is!  It was a beautiful and creative and mindfully GREEN service, as blessing animals is about striving to live in harmony with the earth. 

We prayed: “You have made us and the animals and all living things.  We thank you especially for giving us these animals gathered here, these animals that give us joy.  As you take care of us, so also we pray for hearts of compassion that we might take care of the animals who trust us and depend on us.  Help us to love all creatures as our kin, all animals as our partners on earth, all birds as messengers of praise, all frogs as voices of hope and all small beings as expressions of your mysterious design.  By our care-giving and care-receiving, make us partakers in your own love for all creation.  In Jesus’ name we pray.  Amen.”

Many congregants had brought their pets and one by one, they were brought to a pastor and received a loving blessing.  I moved up to the front row – there are always vacancies in the front row in a Lutheran church – so I could see better.  We had a gorgeous assortment of pugs, labs, beagles, schnauzers (some of each in a couple dogs) along with other breeds and, to my surprise, an array of cats who tolerated the experience with tense patience.  There were a couple of hamsters, a brilliant parrot who stole the show by crawling into it’s mistress’ blouse as Pastor Wayne drew near.  Two little pilgrims brought stuffed animals for blessings. 

It was marvelous to see my fellow pilgrims with their other family members.  I was surprised and disappointed that not one dog looked like its human, at least not to me, perhaps their humans would disagree.   

Reva Rasmussen, Deacon of Evangelism

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