Back in the 1990s a new fad emerged among a few young people in my youth group: they started having rats as pets. However they were not kept in cages at home where they belonged but carried around wherever they went. First one rat appeared then another and at the high point of the fad between tamagotchis and pagers we had about five rats running about during youth club. Not the typical pet and often not more than a “goth” accessory. They were for some part of their expression of rebellion; rebellion against the typical pets. I am pretty sure we won’t have any rats blessed at today’s Animal Service.
Today, we will be remembering St Francis of Assisi whom we have transferred from next week due to our Parish Eucharist and Dedication Festival (have you already booked your place for the Pork Roast after the service?). St Francis took stewardship of God’s creation seriously and wanted to live life in harmony with nature. His love for all things living had a deep impact on the Church and so it is at this time that we pronounce the blessing on all God’s creatures – a blessing God spoke first when he created everything and saw that it was good.
For us it is at this time that we give thanks for all God’s creation and remember that we should be good stewards of that creation including rats. Hope you join us for a furry Animal Service later this morning.