On a beautiful Sunday morning, several pets made their way to church with their owners to receive a special pet blessing at St. Augustine of Canterbury Episcopal Church in Navarre. The Rev. Beth Hoffmann administered the blessing with a sprinkling of holy water.
The long-standing tradition of the blessing of the pets began in the late 19th century to honor the patron saint of animals and ecology, St. Francis of Assisi. According to early writings about St. Francis, he had a great love for all animals and believed that religious faith and care for God’s creatures went hand-in-hand.
The relationship between humans and their pets is often a very strong bond, with pet owners referring to their pets as members of the family.
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