Following the Footsteps of Francis- Happy World Animal Day

st. francis and gracey

“If you have men who will exclude any of God’s creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men”

– Francis of Assisi

Happy World Animal Day!

Today we celebrate the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals.  It is also appropriately and perhaps because of St. Francis that we celebrate World Animal Day.

This day, in many ways, is like every other day for most of us, meaning that we love and care for animals every day.  But today, let’s try to do one extra thing to help out an animal in need.

Maybe you could say a little prayer, or drop off a bag of food or a toy at a shelter, write a letter in protest of the mistreatment of animals, or help spread the word about one of our cousins in need.  Maybe you just scoop up your little loved one and take a little extra time today to express your love and appreciation for your friendship.

And maybe you can do the same to your fellow humans today too.   Just be a little bit more patient, kind and understanding.

I know I want to be more like Francis.

So today and every other day, I will continue to try.

“Start by doing what is necessary, then do what’s possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible”

-Francis of Assisi

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  1. aww gracey, i bet your parents do a lot to help out your cousins and friends of other species. both of my cats were homeless before i brought them home, macchiato was so malnourished she could barely walk and tiny devil was a wee little baby. i sign petitions, send emails and post on my facebook and twitter about animal mistreatment, and steps we can take to help. i hope more people do this, too. animals deserve to be loved.

  2. On Sunday, October 9, we will be taking our 12-year old Siamese, Max, to the blessing of the animals at Holy Family Church in Rockford, IL.  We always take our oldest cat; and for the past few years, it was Buddy who we, unfortunately, lost this past June.  So many people come with a variety of pets.  In fact, one year there was a horse. 

  3. Hi Gracey. We’re celebrating World Animal Day by trying to to raise awareness for Tony The Truck Stop Tiger and the 5,000 – 10,000 privately owned tigers in the United States. Thanks for advocating for cats big and small, and all animals.

  4. I almost forgot that this is World Animal Day. Thanks for the reminder. Here in NYC, St. John the Divine, an amazingly beautiful church on the Upper West Side, hosts a big festival for the animals. Paul Winter often performs, and people bring all sorts of animals to be blessed. It’s a lovely event. 

  5. Our local parish, like many others, has a special service for the Blessing of the Animals on the Sunday closest to St. Francis’ Day. We went again this year, taking the Husky with us; as we stood in the parking lot with the other dogs and cats, singing and praying and fending off the drizzling rain that diluted the holy water being flung about, it occurred to me that, as with so many other things in being a pet parent, it’s not really about the pets. Our dog is a rescue: she knows she is blessed when she curls up in a warm spot, with a full belly, and voices are soft and hands are gentle. It’s all about reminding us humans that we are blessed, and that animals are a blessing.
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  6. Bless all the animals – and I hope that as humans we continue to strive to be as peaceful and respectful to one another and our environment. Missing my little girl today also and wishing and praying that St. Francis is watching over her.

  7. This is such a wonderful post about St. Francis and World Animal Day. Today and everyday I hope we can all embrace the beauty and wonder of animals and appreciate their importance and the way they enrich our lives. Thank you Gracey for being such a great advocate for all our animal friends.

  8. Wonderful entry, Gracey! I wish we would all be a little more like St. Francis. He was a wonderful example for the world. We’ll be putting his wolf story on our site this week. Hope you can swing by and check it out.