Learning About St. Francis Through a Blessing of the Animals

Beloved pets of the EA community received a special blessing on Monday, Oct. 4.

"I have to admit that one of my favorite Chapel services at EA is the Blessing of the Animals," shared Father Tim Gavin, Hon. "For me, it is an opportunity to share the life of Saint Francis with young people who know very little about him. Consequently, they grow to love the mystery surrounding him. I see this service as an opportunity to use the Prayer of Saint Francis as a template for righteous living."

A bearded dragon, ball phyton, two guinea pigs, and several dogs were blessed during Upper School Chapel.

"I find that students from PreK through 12th grade better understand than adults that love is not abstract but palpable like the fur of their dog, the scales of their dragon lizard, the feathers of their cockatiel, or the shell of their turtle," said Father Tim.

Lower School Chaplain Dana Hall stopped by Jenn Tierney's 2nd grade class to bless the class hamster, Cookie. "Cookie may you be blessed by the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit all the days of your life. And thank you for your service to Miss Tierney's 2nd grade class and all students who enjoy your lovely presence and see some part of God's creation in you. Thank you for the joy that you bring to our humans."

Pets of Lower School students were offered a blessing during afternoon pickup including dogs Asher, Willow, Ringo, and Barkley.

"I think the celebration of our pets reminds us to honor all of creation by being good stewards. Also, since it is the Feast of St. Francis, we are reminded that we must take care of the poor, the hungry, the sick, and the homeless."

Read more from Father Tim about St. Francis of Assisi and check out photos of the animal blessings here.

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