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Animal Attraction: Receive A "Pet Blessing"

Animal Attraction:  Receive A

Pastor Diane McGehee of Bellaire United Methodist Church

by Stacy Fox

Posted on March 28, 2014 at 1:17 PM

Updated Friday, Mar 28 at 1:17 PM

Bellaire United Methodist Church (BUMC) is inviting everyone from the community to bring their pets to receive a "pet blessing" on Saturday, March 29th from 2:00pm to 4:00pm at their annual "Blessing of the Animals" event. Attendees will enjoy a short service, a free commemorative photo of their pet with the pastor, as well as the opportunity to meet local "adoptables" from animal rescue groups and visit experts in pet nutrition, dog training, and veterinary care.

Everyone from the community - including those who are not members of the church - is welcome to attend. Attendees will gather on the front lawn at BUMC where Pastors Jim Flagg, Jim Love and Diane McGehee will deliver a short homily about the meaning of the pets in our lives and the importance of the "Blessing of the Animals" tradition. This tradition is conducted in remembrance and celebration of St. Francis of Assisi, declared Patron Saint of Ecology because of his love and devotion to all creatures in the Animal Kingdom.

Following the homily, attendees can take their pet to one of the pastors for an individual blessing, and they will receive a free picture of that memorable event, compliments of Nicky LaWell Photography. Attendees can also visit the church's Faithful Paws Pet Therapy group, who have specially trained animals that administer unconditional love and therapy to adults and children in Houston area nursing homes and hospitals. Local animal rescue groups including Texas Litter Control, Basset Buddies and Texas Sled Dog Rescue will be in attendance with "adoptables" just waiting for a new forever home. Meet a professional dog trainer from Rover Oaks Pet Resort and get training advice for you and your pet. Pet nutrition experts from Natural Pawz will be available to answer pet nutrition questions and provide dog and cat food samples. Local veterinarian, Garnett Von Eiff, DVM will also be on hand to talk about the importance of good pet healthcare and answer any veterinary related questions from attendees.  

"Blessing of the Animals is truly a service that is filled with positive feelings and energy," said Jim Flagg, Pastor of Bellaire United Methodist Church. "When I look into the face of a person who has a companion animal and I pray for them and bless them, I see a look of pure, unconditional love in both of them. I look forward to seeing people from all over the community come together and enjoy this day with their pets each year."

"I loved attending the Blessing of the Animals because both my faith and my pets are so important to me," said Becky McDaniel, event attendee. "It's not every day you get to bring your pets to church! The short service was meaningful, and the photograph taken with the Pastor came out beautifully. It was also informative about local pet-related services in our community. I go every year, and my pets and I always have a great time!"

Attendees are invited to bring a variety of pets, including dogs, cats, rabbits, birds, reptiles and fish. Pets must be friendly and either on-leash or in carriers at all times.

Bellaire United Methodist Church