Blessing of the Animals

About a dozen local pets came to be blessed at Trinity Church in Menlo Park this morning, but as the Rev. Matthew Dutton Gillett had said in advance: “Stuffed animals are welcome too.”

That drew baby Olivia, her dad and a stuffed rabbit, who was promptly blessed by Aaron Klinefelter, the associate for children and family ministries.

The little white dog pictured below seems to be seeking reassurance from its owner, or maybe just striking a solemn pose.

Many Christian churches in the United States celebrate the Feast of St Francis of Assisi on October 4 each year, or a Sunday close to that date. The feast commemorates the life of St Francis, who was born in the 12th century and is the Roman Catholic Church’s patron saint of animals and the environment. Hence, it’s a popular day for pets to be “blessed”.

Photos by Frances Freyberg (c) 2018

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Animals get blessed this morning at Trinity Church in Menlo Park

Accompanying their humans in the pews of Trinity Church this morning were well-behaved dogs along with other more skittish pets — cats, birds, bunnies — in pet carriers. It was the Menlo Park church’s annual blessing of the animals service held nearest to the Feast of St. Francis, known — somewhat mythically noted the Rev. […]

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Animals are blessed at Trinity Church in Menlo Park

Pets were invited to come with their people this morning at Trinity Church in Menlo Park.  The blessing of pets and animals is often celebrated near the feast of St. Francis of Assisi  on October 4. Most of the pets in attendance were dogs, who were, all in all, well-behaved with just an occasional bark ringing […]

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It’s the animals turn to get blessed at Trinity Church

Dozens of dogs, stuffed animals, and a few birds went to church this morning, as part of Trinity Church’s annual Blessing of the Animals. Children and their families say the outdoor service is one of the highlights of the year, and today’s beautiful, sunny morning made it all that much better. Earlier in the week, […]

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It’s take your pet to church day

From the back of the church, a cockatoo screeched periodically while a chicken sat patiently on a side aisle. Up by the altar, a young acolyte held her hamster in a pink plastic globe. In addition to the regular contingent of two-legged human animals, many pews had four-legged visitors, mostly of the canine variety. It […]

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