Blessing of the Animals Service

Why not have a family “Blessing of the Animals” worship service? (Doing this in your own home will insure minimal trauma and danger for your animal … as opposed to taking your beloved gerbil to a worship service filled with cats, terriers and other predators.) Just assign the roles and readings, assemble the family, drag little Ratley out from under the sofa, and begin the Service of Blessing.

Leader: The Lord be with you.
Response: And also with you.

Prayers:
O merciful Creator, Your hand is open wide to satisfy the needs of every living creature. Make us always thankful for Your loving providence. Grant that we, remembering the account that we must one day give, may be faithful stewards of Your good gifts; through Your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Almighty God, in giving us dominion over everything on earth, You made us fellow workers in Your creation: Give us wisdom and reverence to use the resources of nature in such a manner that no living thing may suffer from our abuse of them, and that generations yet to come may continue to praise You for Your bounty. Amen

Readings:
Genesis 1:1, 20-28
Genesis 6:17-22
Psalm 8
Psalm 148

Hymn:
All Creatures of Our God and King (LBW 527)
All Things Bright and Beautiful (WOV 767)

Blessing of the Animals:
The leader (or primary caregiver for each pet) may lay hands on the head of the animal (or the tank or cage in which the animal lives)

Let us pray.
Gracious God, in Your love You created us in Your image and made us stewards of the animals that live in the skies, the earth, and the sea. Bless and protect our pets (names may be added here) And bless us in our care for our pets and for all Your animals whose lives intersect with our own. Help us to recognize Your power and wisdom in the variety of creatures that live in our world, and hear our prayer for all that suffer overwork, ill-treatment, hunger or fear. Protect Your creatures and guard them from all evil, now and forever. Amen

The Lord’s Prayer

Blessing:
Leader: May the Lord order our days & our deeds in His peace.
All: Amen.

A good time to have this might be October 4, St. Francis’ Day. But any time would be fun for the family.

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