Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Lansing (www.LansingLutherans.org) held a blessing of the animals service on Sunday, October 4, in celebration of the Feast of Saint Francis, the patron saint of animals and the environment.
“Along with churches around the world, we wanted to hold up the work of Saint Francis and his kindness and humility to animals,” the Rev. Laura Gentry said, “and to acknowledge the important role animals play in our lives, especially our pets and companion animals. They are family to us.”
A zealous group of dogs and cats and those who care for them attended, including two puppies and a pregnant dog. Each animal received the laying on of hands by the Reverend Gentry, clad in an animal-themed pastor’s stole. After each personalized word of blessing, the animal was given a sprinkling of holy water. Some pets looked curious but all responded gracefully to the experience.
A blessing was then said for a herd of horses not able to be present at the service along with blessings for all the animals living at the Love and Friendship Adoption Shelter of the Humane Society of Northeast Iowa (www.hsnei.org). Located at 2345 Millennium Road off Highway 9 outside of Decorah, the shelter was the recipient of offerings collected at the animal blessing service.
“This was an exciting first-time offering for the Lansing community!” added Pastor Gentry. Thank you to Kristie Kamm for the photos below.
|Chuck Weipert holds his cat, Garfield, as he is blessed|
|Getting ready for the service with Macy Vinson holding her cat, Cotton|
|Pastor Laura laughs as Dolly, Rose Sweeney's dog, responds curiously to her holy water sprinkling.|
|Buster gets a blessing while Amber Sero holds him and Debbie Sero smiles|
|Duke, Rick Gramlich's dog, looks proud of his blessing certificate after the service|
|Ricki, Alec Seibert's dog, gets a blessing|
|Andrea Vinson holds her pregnant dog, Porsche, as Gracie looks on|
|Barb Weipert's cat, Pita, receives a blessing|
|Peggy Broadhead's dog gets blessed|
|Khan, Kristie Kamm's cat, peers out of his carrier|
|Jack Schweitzer holds the music as Megan Vinson and Pastor Laura play the songs for the service|
|Ellicha Gage's dog, Zoey, receives her blessing|
|Donna Reed's puppy, Remi, gets blessed|
|Sue Limbach's dog, Buck, gets blessed|
|Dolly, Rose Sweeney's dog, gets a blessing|
|Rande Gustafson holds his new puppy, Cody, as he is blessed|