From pig to plush, animals get blessed at St. Peter’s Church
St Peter’s Church went to the dogs, gerbils, and pigs for the church’s annual Blessing of the Animals celebration on October 7.
More than 100 pets joined their owners in the pews during the regular Sunday service to receive blessings from The Rev. Scott Ciosek.
“The interesting thing this year is it’s really becoming a community event,” Ciosek said, noting people from different churches and even different faiths were in attendance.
During the service, Ciosek offered blessings for each animal in attendance, including some unusual pets. Children brought in their stuffed animals to receive blessings, and one attendee even brought in a pet pig.
“The pig really stole the show,” Ciosek said. “We’ve never had a pig before.”
It is the fifth year St. Peter’s provided blessings to animals.
The tradition is in honor of St. Francis of Assisi, which churches honor on the first Sunday of October. St. Francis is widely known for his love of all of God’s creatures, including animals, following a conversion experience in the 13th century.
“I’ve been [to Assisi] twice, and you can still really feel his presence,” Ciosek said. “The animals just walk up to you like they don’t do anywhere else.”