All creatures great and small
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.