After a two-year break because of the flu pandemic, Resurrection Church resumed its “Blessing of the Animals” service Oct. 4, the feast day of St. Francis of Assisi, patron saint of animals. The service was not held in 2020 and 2021 after being initiated at the parish in 2008.
“We thought it was time to bring it back,” said Pastor John Barry, who conducted the popular service with the assistance of Fr. Anthoni Jeorge, who was recently assigned to the parish. The service has been held under four different pastors.
About 40 pet owners attended this year’s event (in a drizzling rain) with an assortment of about 30 animals, each of which were individually blessed by Fr. Barry. Some of the attendees have participated in the service every year. One parishioner said she had brought four dogs, two cats and a gecko over the years for the blessing. Other small reptiles, birds and small furry animals have also been in attendance each year.
Some pet owners gave testimony about how their animals had helped them in their faith by fostering an appreciation of all of God’s creatures. The “Class of 2022” gathered for a group picture after the service.