It was a case of all creatures great and small making up one church congregation this weekend.
St Ambrose Church in Moss Lane, Leyland, held a pet blessing service where parishioners brought along everything from dogs to a parrot, to celebrate the wonder of animals. The service was thoroughly enjoyed by the Reverend Duncan Clarke, who led the blessings.
He said: “We hold this service every year, as close as possible to St Francis’ Day, because of his links to preaching to the birds and so on.
“While the numbers were slightly down this year, it was still a busy service. We sang All Things Bright and Beautiful, with a few of the pets joining in too. The pets were mainly dogs, but we had a parrot and a guinea pig to bless too, and in the past have had chickens, rabbits and even a long-eared owl too. We also had a talk from a member of the RSPCA about their work in the area, and the Reverend Nick Proctor, a minister who also works as a vet, joined us too.
“Father Graham Ashworth also did a blessing, and I feel this service is good for all churches, celebrating the wonder of all animals.
“Our pets are very important to us, and brighten our lives, and for some of us they are the only regular contact we have. It’s all just a bit of good fun too, and it’s certainly something I look forward to every year.”