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Local church holds blessing of animals event

Mother Andrea Jones officiated over St. Thomas Episcopal Church’s 2nd annual blessing of animals. The event was in conjunction with the Feast of St. Francis of Assissi. Here she is blessing Zebbie, a zebra owned by Eli Watson. BY KATHRYN SWAN/J-C CORRESPONDENT
Mother Andrea Jones officiated over St. Thomas Episcopal Church’s 2nd annual blessing of animals. The event was in conjunction with the Feast of St. Francis of Assissi. Here she is blessing Zebbie, a zebra owned by Eli Watson. BY KATHRYN SWAN/J-C CORRESPONDENT

St. Thomas Episcopal Church observed its 2nd annual Feast of St. Francis of Assissi’s Day Sunday afternoon with a blessing of animals.

The liturgy was open to all congregations and their pets. “All creatures great and small were welcome,” said Mother Andrea Jones who officiated over the service. “Every day we receive a special kind of unconditional love by our pets, no matter how big or small. Just as we receive blessings for ourselves, our special family members deserve them as well.”

Blessed were six dogs, a zebra, miniature horse, regular horse, a rabbit. Bible readings were led by Criss Blackwood and Lu King. Mother Andrea gave this Prayer for Animals.

“Hear our humble prayer, O God, for our friends the animals, Especially for animals who are suffering; for many that are hunted or lost, or deserted or frightened or hungry; for those that are abused and neglected by word or deed; for all that must be put to death. We entreat for them all thy mercy and pity, and for those who deal with them we ask a heart of compassion and gentle hands and kindly words. Make us, ourselves, to be true friends to the animals and to share the blessing of the merciful. Amen.”

A reception followed with treats for both people and their pets.

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