It has become a tradition at many churches to bless animals – usually pets–on the feast of St. Francis of Assisi. St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Del Mar will honor the tradition this year with its own blessing of the animals at the 5 p.m. service on Saturday, Oct. 4.
"St. Francis was a great lover of all creation," says the Rev. Dr. Frank Hegedus, interim rector and a former Franciscan. "He understood that animals play an important part in God's plan of creation and remind us that we are not alone as sentient beings in this world."
Both members and non-members are invited to bring their pets for a blessing.
"Most of the animals should probably be leashed or caged for their own sense of security," said Hegedus. "But we leave that to the judgment of the owner."
The service takes place on the courtyard at the entrance to the church at 336 14th St. in Del Mar.