On Saturday, October 4th we held our 13th Blessing of the Animals, which coincides with the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi, whose love for all creatures (human included) is celebrated worldwide.

According to Genesis, God “let the water teem with living creatures, let birds fly above the earth and placed the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground and the wild animals each according to their kind." God then gave all this to man – God gave us the responsibility of caring for his entire creation, and pets are constant reminders of this blessing. Pets help us start conversations, find common ground, and make connections.  Pets give us comfort, something to care for and come home to; and above all, pets show us how to love.

Each year this event not only gives us a chance to recognize the furred, feathered, scaly and finned friends that bring such joy to our lives but also provides us with a community outreach opportunity. If you missed us this year, please consider joining us again in October 2015. Invite a family member or friend to join you -  since everyone can always use the touch of a soft muzzle anytime!

On October 5th, during our celebration of the legacy of St. Francis of Assisi, our parish officially launched the Backpack Program. After the 10 a.m. service, we invited parishioners of all ages to come to the parish hall and help make a month’s worth of backpacks to be distributed throughout the month to our students in need at Padonia Elementary School. CHC volunteers provided the food to get us started, but we invite everyone in our community to contribute to this program either through food donations or through volunteering to drop off backpacks to the school on Friday mornings. This is a meaningful project that not only relieves suffering now but gives children a better start in life through improved nutrition and higher readiness for learning. If you would like to help us throughout the year on this project,  please call the church at 410-252-2711.