Blessing of the Animals

On August 25, 2011 we held our first Blessing of the Animals at Heatherhope Farm. We hope to make this an annual event.

 

This service was prepared by John R. Seraphine. Except for the benediction all prayers and the the blessing were composed by him. It was his intention to fill the service with a spirit akin to Celtic Christianity.

 

 

Blessing of the  Animals

Heatherhope Farm—Sycamore, Illinois

 

Invocation

L              Creator God, your Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth.

C              As an infant he was cradled in a manger. He preached of the birds. He rode into Jerusalem on a lowly donkey.

L             He is your Lamb, taking away our sin.

C             May Christ’s Spirit open our eyes now to your power and presence within us and all around us.

L             May Christ’s Spirit open our hearts now to your blessing that flows through all the animals of the fields, of the forests, of the seas and the air.

C             May Christ’s Spirit open us to the very special blessing that is ours through our companion animals.

All           Amen.

 

Opening Prayer

Lord God, all life is yours and all living things are holy. We bow before you in thankfulness for all animals, and for the ways you feed us, clothe us, and inspire us through them. We beg your forgiveness for every way we have forgotten that you, and not we ourselves, are the Center of the Circle of Life, in which you have assigned the animals an honored place. Guide and empower us to be faithful to you in the way we care for animals and live among them.

And bless them as they have been faithful blessings to us.  In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Amen.

 

Readings

Genesis 1:20-25

Isaiah 11:6-9

Matthew 10:29

 

Reflections

 

Our Circle of Blessing

Introduce yourself and your pets.

Share stories of special sorrows over the losses of beloved pets.

Share stories of special joys over pet adoptions and things your animal companions have given you.

 

Blessing

The firmness of God strengthen your bones.

The light of God illumine your eyes.

The compassion of God flow in your heart.

The comfort of God ease your pain, and the pain of others through your touch.

The faithfulness of God protect you forevermore.

In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, Amen.

 

Final Prayers

Lord, you teach us of life and death through our animals. We are not afraid of shedding tears over our pets who have died because we know we share in your compassion.  And we know you will cause our compassion to reach far beyond the animals to the people you have given us to love. We thank you for those who have gathered here today and those who await us in our homes and neighborhoods. May we share our animals, our lives, and your love with them all. Amen.

 

Benediction and Sending (Attributed to St. Clare of Assisi)

Live without fear. Your Creator has made you holy, always protects you, and loves you as a mother. Go in peace to follow the good road; and may God’s blessing be with you always.  Amen.