|The beauty of flowers and produce arranged at the altar is rather lost on the dogs who have come to the Harvest animal service.|
At home Zebedee had been practising how to behave in church:
|Paws together and eyes closed|
When it came to it, everything was too exciting (so exciting that I had no hands free to photograph him). I'm not sure how many people find church that exciting, though I do know that the more regularly they come and participate, the more they benefit from it. This congregation said that they had never laughted so much during a service.
The congregation numbered 31 humans and 12 dogs, some of whom gathered for a picture outside after the service. Some came because it was harvest, a good time to remember to be grateful for the blessings of life and not to take everything for granted. Some came because of the animals, realising that our care for them gives us a hint of God's love for us. Some came because of St Francis, for whom the whole of life was integrated. His close involvement with every part of the whole of God's creation, his relationship with "brother Sun" and "sister Moon", earth, sky, rivers, birds, animals and his fellow humans may be what led to his insights on God's involvement with us, coming as Jesus to share our human life in every way from birth to death and beyond.