December 20, 2012
Celebrating the Human-Animal Bond
There are many ways your church can reach out to pet owners, providing support for both people and animals
The animals who share our homes become part of our families. We rejoice in their happiness and grieve their passing. For those of us who live alone, pets can be our closest companions. They also provide vital public and therapeutic services.
A ministry for companion animals serves the needs of people and animals. Your faith group can "Fill the Bowl" for pets of families in need, volunteer to care for the pets of sick congregation members, explore animal-assistance therapy, plan a youth-group ministry to help local animal shelters, and much more to make a difference in your community.
The Fill the Bowl Project
What would you do if you couldn't afford to feed your pet? Every day, families struggle to keep food on the table for their children and food in the bowl for their pets. Some must give up their pets because they simply can't feed them.
At the same time, animal shelters and rescue groups strive to feed the growing number of cats, dogs, and other homeless pets in their care. The Humane Society of the United States has made it easy for you to help these families, shelters, and rescues with the Fill the Bowl Project.
- Order a free Fill the Bowl Project kit
- St. Francis Day in a Box: a multimedia toolkit to enrich your St. Francis Day celebrations
- See how two methodist congregations held their blessing service
- Get inspired with a sample blessing prayer [PDF] Ecumenical version [PDF]
- Get inspired by a New Orleans congregation who organized a free veterinary clinic
- Help parishioners who are struggling to afford their pets
Animal blessing services
Pets for Life
Provide resources for low-cost veterinary care
Help pet owners grieve the loss of their pets