First Annual Blessing of the Animals
First Lutheran celebrated a Blessing of the Animals October 3, 2015.
Martin Luther once wrote:
We are to remember that animals are God’s creation, that He provides for them (Matt. 6)., and that they may serve as very fitting images for higher spiritual truths, most especially truths about how the Kingdom of God comes (Luke 15:3-7, John 10). They are not to be treated with cruelty, but received as God’s good gifts over which He has placed us as stewards (Gen 1:28)
Prayer of St. Francis of Assissi
Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console,
To be understood as to understand,
To be loved as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
It is in dying to self that we are born to eternal life.
St. Francis preached often of the duty of men to protect and enjoy nature as both the stewards of God’s creation and as creatures ourselves. Saint Francis’ feast day is observed on October 4.