Blessing of the Animals at St. James’ Cathedral

Sermon

Right Reverend Linda Nicholls, Bishop of Trent-Durham

 

Blessing-Golden

Blessing of a Golden Retriever holding a program

Blessing-Schnauzer

Sign of the Cross over a Schnauzer

 

If you have men who will exclude any of God’s creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men.

—Francis of Assisi 1181 – 1226

All photography courtesy of Lene Andersen

 

Paulette Huebert Touby —

The Cathedral Church of St. James celebrated the feast day of St. Francis of Assisi which is officially October 4 on a fittingly bucolic morning fresh from rain on

Saturday, October 5 on its west lawn on the corner of Church and King streets. Officiated by The Right Reverend Linda Nicholls, Bishop of Trent-Durham, the service began with Cecil Frances Alexander’s ode to creation All Things

Blessing1

Laying on of hands

Bright and Beautiful sung by St. James’ choir clad in choirs’ habits of red and white.
Chairs were set out for the public and special guests were Michael O’Sullivan, Executive Director of the Humane Society of Canada and members of The Toronto Police Service Mounted Unit.
After a welcome and prayers there was a reading from the Book of Genesis: “Let the earth bring forth living creatures of every kind”, and from the Gospel of Matthew advocating care for others, approximately 200 people were invited to bring their pets (mostly dogs) to the front to be blessed. All were on their best behaviour.

 

Blessing2

Laying on of hands

 

 

 

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