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It was another blessed day at Central Christian Church Sunday afternoon as over 50 dogs and their owners gathered in the dog park as the  church celebrated its tenth annual Blessing of the Animals in honor of St. Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of  animals.

It is said that St. Francis preached to a group of birds without one flying away. That same awareness was demonstrated by the dogs as they seemed to pay attention and listen when receiving a blessing.

Erik Stolpe, Grady Quick and Michael Raines led a “sing a long” before the dogs and their owners lined up for an individual blessing by Pastor Ken Crawford and church elders, Tyson Woods, Frank Whitington and Grady Quick.

Daisy Cakes on Lemmon Avenue provided beautiful, delicious cupcakes for pet parents to enjoy while our neighborhood grocery, Trader Joe’s, and local pet stores, Pet Supplies Plus, generously donated treats and goodies for doggie bags and a door prize.  Central sent everyone home with the printed prayer of St. Francis and a medallion to place on the dog’s collar to commemorate the blessing.

It was a great Sunday afternoon of fun and fellowship in the dog park.  However, Central doesn’t just celebrate love of animals once a year, “Church in the Dog Park” is held the first and third Sundays of the month at 9 a.m.

It’s a casual service with music, a short message, do-nuts and coffee.  Sunday morning, come as you are, and bring your dog to church.

Watch for the “Lighting of the Christmas Tree” in the dog park in December.  It is another celebration similar to the feast of St. Francis where everyone gathers for wassail, caroling and celebrating the joy that animals bring to our lives.

At Central, all are welcome, and “all” means all. Call the church office if you would like to be added to the email list so that you know what’s happening at Central Community Dog Park.

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