All crea­tures great and small

Coastal News - - Front Page -

Crea­tures great and small are not un­usual to find at Whanga­mata Angli­can Church, but on Oc­to­ber 1 they’ll be es­pe­cially wel­come.

It’s the an­nual an­i­mal bless­ing ser­vice, close to the fes­ti­val of St Fran­cis of As­sisi.

Fran­cis loved all flora and fauna, and past an­i­mals and pet Sun­day ser­vices have drawn ev­ery­thing from the usual dogs and cats through to lla­mas, don­keys, birds (caged is best!), rats and even snails.

Angli­can Mis­sioner Rev Peter Min­son says An­i­mal Bless­ing Sun­day is a very colour­ful and lively day in the church cal­en­dar and it’s never dull.

“St Fran­cis is one of the most pop­u­lar saints, partly be­cause he saw an­i­mals as his broth­ers and sis­ters be­cause they were God’s crea­tures, just like us hu­mans,” Mr Min­son said.

“Fran­cis said of an­i­mals: ‘Not to hurt our hum­ble brethren is our first duty to them, but to stop there is not enough. We have a higher mis­sion — to be of ser­vice to them wher­ever they re­quire it.’ So Fran­cis prayed that God would work through him

■ Bless­ing of the An­i­mals ser­vice: Sun­day, Oc­to­ber 1, 9am-10am, All Saints Com­mu­nity Church (town end of Bev­er­ley Tce)

BLESSED DOGS: Rev Peter Min­son blesses the an­i­mals at last year’s ser­vice.

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