Thus, we bless all good things, dedicating and sanctifying them (and ourselves) to the glory of God and our loving communion with the Lord. To bless animals, especially our pets, is a realization that all things are gifts from above intended for our comfort and benefit.
As God’s children, animal blessings and such bestow on us the obligation to be good and faithful stewards of that, which has been given to us in love. By honoring our pets we make a commitment to care for the life entrusted to us (be it dog, cat, hamster, gecko, rabbit, bird, ferret, fish or any other pet).
Additionally, our parish ministry includes the proper burial of pets in a short ritual involving the reading of Scripture, prayers of supplication and the traditional sprinkling with Holy Water. If your pet or farm animal has died, please call the pastor to schedule this beautiful Service at a location of your choice.
We invite you also to join us at our next Blessing of Pets and Animals, held at the church. The pastor will also come to your house or farm for a blessing.
The following prayer is attributed to St. Basil the Great:
The earth is the Lord’s and the fulness thereof. O God, enlarge within us the sense of fellowship with all living things, to whom Thou gavest the earth as their home in common with us. We remember with shame that in the past we have exercised the high dominion of man with ruthless cruelty, so that the voice of the earth, which should have gone up to Thee in song, has been a groan of travail. May we realize that they live not for us alone, but for themselves and for Thee and that they love the sweetness of life even as we and serve Thee better in their place than we in ours.
For those, O Lord, the humble beasts, that bear with us the burden and heat of day, and offer their guileless lives for the well-being of humankind; and for the wild creatures, whom Thou hast made wise, strong and beautiful: We supplicate for them Thy great tenderness of heart, for Thou hast promised to save both man and beast; and great is Thy loving kindness, O Master, Savior of the world.