Blessing of the Animals-‘A celebration of deep love’
Elder Joanne Kelhart was the person everyone pointed to when asked, “Who is charge?” at the Oct. 4 Blessing of the Animals event. She was in the small cluster of volunteers staffing the folding tables where people brought their pets (all dogs this year) to sign up for the Blessing of the Animals at the First Presbyterian Church on Center Street in Bethlehem.
“It’s our third year holding the event,” Elder Kelhart said.
The event is free, though donations of dog and cat food are much appreciated.
According to the elder, the dog and cat food gets donated to the Meals on Wheels program. When faced with a quizzical look, she added, “The Meals on Wheels people distribute the dog and cat food to their clients so that they have pet food for their animals.”
The Blessing of the Animals event is part of First Presbyterian’s congregational life service, Kelhart explained.
“The program is a celebration of god’s creation,” said Senior Pastor J. C. Austin. “It’s a celebration of the deep love people have for their pets and the love pets have for their owners.
“We as human beings are called to be responsible for creatures,” said the senior pastor. “It goes back to the Genesis story of creation.”