St. Mary’s City, MD — A number of churches throughout the area held Blessing of the Pets this past weekend in honor of the Feast of St. Francis Assisi, the patron saint of animals.

Trinity Episcopal Church in St. Mary’s City held its Blessing of the Pets at 3 p.m. Sunday with Rev. John Ball officiating.

The service included the following prayer: “God of faithful surprises, throughout the ages you have made known your love and power in unexpected ways and places, through the beauty of creation, through our family and friends, through our pets: May we daily perceive the joy and wonder of your abiding presence and offer our lives in gratitude for redemption.”

The service also including reading from Genesis about the creation of animals with the concluding words: “God saw everything that he has made, and indeed it was very good.”

Prayers included the following: “For all the animals who bring loveliness and happiness into our lives, though they are not here today—for their long lives and good health we, ask – May they be blessed, as they have blessed us.”

Photos by Ron Bailey