Tuesday, October 04, 2016

October 4: Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi

Happy Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi which we celebrate today. St. Francis loved God's creation just like every Christian ought to. It is, after all, God's Creation. But some people push this too far. Animals are not sacred, they're not holy. They're animals. Some churches have turned today into a travesty by bringing in every dog, cat, bird, and horse into churches all over the world to be "blessed" by a priest.

This is not okay and does not make sense. I know a lot of people will be indignant. "My animal is so amazing, he is so loving! and St. Francis loved animals! Who are you to tell me not to get a blessing for my beloved pet!"

Well, first of all, pets are animals. They do not have a conscience and cannot choose between good or evil, therefore none are morally praiseworthy. They might be companions and helpful and so on, but they are not rational actors. They are animals, and therefore do not have a rational soul. Blessing an animal is no different than blessing any other random thing in your house.

People like to think animals are human and in many cases they believe animals are better than humans, but animals act upon instinct. They do not make moral choices, only our personification of animals tells us they do.

So stop walking in these dirty animals, traipsing in mud and dirt and everything else into a sacred and holy place such as a church. Here, the Eucharist is consecrated, it's not a barn. Animals cannot pray, they cannot worship. And people who attend these blessing of animal events aren't there to pray either. They're there to make their animals more than they really are.

Fortunately at my church, even though they do this, it's done outside the church. So at least these animals aren't allowed into the actual church.

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