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Feast of St. Francis of Assisi

The feast of the Patron Saint of Animals and the Environment is celebrated by Christians on October 4 and on the first Sunday of the month pets are brought to the church's grounds to be blessed. I never had the opportunity to bring any of my pets to the blessing but in its place I put a small medal of St. Francis on the collar of my three dogs. The cats didn't have one because they didn't wear a collar but we did put one on the bridle of my daughter's horse. She eventually removed the medal because it spooked the horse.

‘Do-it-yourself’ Franciscan Animal Blessing

For all animals:

Blessed are you, Lord God,
maker of all living creatures.
On the fifth and sixth days of creation,
you called forth fish in the sea,
birds in the air and animals on the land.
You inspired St. Francis to call all animals
his brothers and sisters.
We ask you to bless this animal.
By the power of your love,
enable it to live according to your plan.
May we always praise you
for all your beauty in creation.
Blessed are you, Lord our God, in all your creatures! Amen.


And here's a prayer for a sick pet:

Heavenly Father,
you created all things for your glory
and made us stewards of this creature.
If it is your will, restore it to health and strength.
Blessed are you, Lord God,
and holy is your name for ever and ever. Amen.


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St. Francis in my garden.


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My beloved Coco a few months after being diagnosed with liver cancer. She's keeping company to Tuxedo over at the Rainbow Bridge.

Comments (14)

Thanks for this beautiful entry. I love St. Francis. Just read about Anne going to an animal blessing at a church in Florence today.

Maria the kitten is going in for her female surgery this week; I will use these prayers for her.

And Coco...I know I've told you this before but she looks so much like my Rocky who passed over to the Rainbow Bridge in 1993. They always stay in our hearts but boy, I still miss him!

And I forgot to mention the countdown widget...5 days! Oh I'm so excited for you. Are you ready to go?

I'm so sorry about Coco! :)

Annie, I'll also say the prayer for Maria. It's a good thing that you're taking care of this now so she's fully recovered before your trip.

I remember your message on the Pet Blog when I posted the picture of Coco. Rocky is such a cute name for a cocker. I'm sure that he gave you much love and companionship.

As to being ready for Venice, I think I am. I have been moving everything I'm taking to the guest room and will do a trial packing on Wednesday. Hopefully I can fit it all in my two small bags. I still have to print many pages and gather all the documents. I think I might split the travel time in two and spend one night in Philadelphia. Flying from Phoenix to Europe is too long and coping with 9 hours of time difference is a killer. Soon I'll be blogging on the Venice portion of the trip.

Kathy (Trekcapri):

Hi Maria, I'm very sorry to hear about your Coco, Tuxedo and Annie's Rocky. It was nice to learn about St. Francis and reading these two beautiful prayer blessings.

Hope your packing goes well. Enjoy your final countdown days. I am so excited for you and I am really looking forward to hearing all about your experiences in all the places you'll be visiting. Very cool!

Have a great week Maria and thanks for sharing your photos and for writing this great entry.

nancyhol:

Maria,

I loved your post. And Coco is so beautiful in that picture.

I hope you have a wonderful time in Venice. You deserve it!

Thanks so much for saying some prayers for Maria. I'll be so relieved when this is over. I know it's routine but I hate the thought of her being in any discomfort. I'm planning to take Thursday and Friday off from work so I can stay with her.

I do the same thing - I put everything in the guest bedroom and then go though it all to see how much of it will fit! An overnight in Philly sounds like a good plan. I know that the trip wears me out (and I'm on the east coast, much closer). Good luck with the packing!

sandrac:

Maria, Coco is so beautiful and I'm sorry for your loss.

I love your statue of St. Francis, what a lovely object to have in your garden.

Only four days to your trip, how wonderful.I look forward to your postings from Venice -- you'll have such a marvelous time. It is a long trip and a big time change to cope with! During the last several years, I've relied on a homeopathic product No-Jet-Lag (very imaginative name) that I think has helped me cope well with the time change. Of course, I'm very suggestable, so it may well be a placebo effect. But whatever it takes to make travel easier, I'm all for!

Good luck with your packing.

Kathy, thank you for your kind words. I have been a follower of St. Francis since I was a child and I think it is wonderful that our beloved pets have a saint to protect them. I'm looking forward to the day you have a kitty (or two!) and you can have them blessed on St. Francis' feast.

I'm enjoying the few days left before departing but feeling a bit stressed by the large number of small tasks I have to do. Hopefully everything will fall into place ( BGE calls it 'flow') and I'll get everything done.

Nancy, thank you for stopping by! I love that picture of Coco so much that it's on my desktop. I have to see her sweet face everyday. I often think of your Meow and how much you still miss him. I know it's so hard when you work from home and your pet is your constant companion. Take care and have fun at Palma's.

Annie, isn't it silly how much we suffer when our pets have to go through a procedure at the vet? I almost worried as much for them as I did for my kids. Does she have to stay overnight at the clinic?

Sandra, I love my statue of St. Francis. I've had him for about 15 years and enjoy having him grace a corner of my yard.

I have a bit of a hard time with jet lag because I can't sleep on the plane and I also sleep very little the night before leaving. I think that breaking the flights into two days will help with catching up on my sleep, since the transatlantic flight leaves in the evening.

I'm also all for making travel easy and comfy so I'll check the product you mentioned. I recall Girasoli mentioning that on her last trip she ate some kind of berry or cherry that was suppose to help with jet lag. I'll have to check her blog and take note of the fruit.

What a beautiful photo of Coco. That is a great statue of St. Francis. Did you buy it in the US? I really enjoyed this post.

4 more days!!! How exciting!! Dried cherries, although scientifically I can't say for sure that it worked. Like Sandra, I am very suggestable, so it could have been the placebo effect but at least the cherries have lots of vitamin C so they serve a second purpose.

No, it's an out-patient procedure so I'll drop her off in the morning and then pick her up after work. Then I have to keep her quiet and inactive, which is going to be a challenge because she is a Wild Child!

I have bought some turkey baby food (comfort food to help her recover). A friend who has nine cats told me about this so I tried it, and both LuLu and Maria love the stuff.

how adorable he is in that photo. What a heart breaker.

Hi Maria, just wanted to let you know that Maria the kitten is doing fine. Thanks for your prayers!

She's home and is being a little more rambunctious than someone who just had surgery should be (smile) but overall, she is okay. I am so relieved that it's over!

And your countdown says 1 day! Woo hoo! If I don't talk to you before, I hope that you have a wonderful, magical, and relaxing time. Kisses to Venice from me!

Wow, you leave in a day!!! I am so thrilled for you!! Have a fabulous time!!

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