The Feast of St. Francis of Assisi is Tuesday, Oct. 4. Many people bring their pets to church to be blessed on this day because of his love for animals as expressed in his Canticle of Creatures. You are invited to Mass at noon in Sansbury Hall to be a part of the “Bruiser Blessing,” where the Office of Campus Ministries’ mascot, Bruiser, will stand in for all the pets belonging to the ODU family. You will also be able to take home a blessed St. Francis medal to place on your pet’s collar, leash, cage, etc.
St. Francis of Assisi was born in the 12th century, lived in Italy, and founded the men’s Order of Friars Minor, the women’s Order of St. Clare and the Third Order of Saint Francis for men and women not able to live the lives of itinerant preachers. Francis is one of the most venerated religious figures in history. He is remembered for his generosity to the poor, his willingness to minister to the sick and for his love of animals and nature. He is the Catholic Church’s patron saint of animals and the environment.
Consider donating pet food to a local animal shelter around this time of the year. The Feast of St. Francis of Assisi also provides an opportunity to teach children about endangered or abused animals and what we can do to help.