A crowd of animal lovers showed up with dozens of precious pets for the Blessing of the Animals held Saturday, September 30 at Saint Andrew’s Anglican Church in conjunction with the celebration of the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi.
The menagerie included 75 dogs of varied sizes and breeds, two white burros and one itsy-bitsy kitten.
Reverend Bryan Beveridge officiated the liturgy with prayers and reflections interjected between the appropriate opening and closing hymns.
“God of unity and peace, send us now your Holy Spirit, that we may feel a deeper kinship with all living creatures and by this act of renewal reaffirm the bond of covenant with these animals in our care,” he intoned before the congregation responded vowing to act as worthy custodians of their four-legged companions.
Aside from chiming in with occasional barking, the critters were all on their best behavior throughout the service, even in the bustle of being formed into separate lines to receive the blessings administered by Beveridge, the Reverend Iris Slocombe, Deacon Don Snell and Spanish-speaking lay assistant María Elena Echeveste.