Animal Ministry

 

 “But ask the beasts, and they will teach you;
    
the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you;
or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you;
    and the fish of the sea will declare to you.
Who among all these does not know
    
that the hand of the Lord has done this?
In his hand is the life of every living thing
    
and the breath of all mankind.
(Job 12:7-10)

 

The parish's ministry to animals and their owners arises out of our Lord's admonition to be good stewards of the gifts he has given to us. "As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace (1 Peter 4:10).


This ministry has evolved slowly over time and now is an active part of our parish's mission to our local community.


We are very proud of our annual pet blessings in honor of the Feast of St. Francis. Parishioners and community members are welcome to attend mass with their pets and receive a blessing from our priest. Treats and mementos are handed out. All are welcome to join in our fellowship afterwards in Parish Hall.


We have also arranged numerous adoption events on the parish grounds in collaboration with Animal Care Centers of NYC.  ACC is the City's only shelter that does not turn away any animal presented for surrender. These events are held during our parish's semi-annual flea markets in the spring and fall on the parish grounds. Our onsite adoption rate during these events is high.

 

Hospitalizations, relocations to nursing facilities and fixed-incomes are the primary reasons that senior citizens find themselves forced to relinquish their beloved pets, who have selflessly provide them with companionship and emotional support. Often these animals are themselves senior citizens, and the their adoption is sometimes limited by expensive, pre-existing medical conditions or behavioral problems arising out of the trauma of being torn away from familiar surroundings and their long-time human companions.  Animals have an emotional life, also, and can become depressed and anxious during such stressful changes.


To help our vulnerable seniors avoid having to make such a heart-rending choice, the Animal Ministry collects companion animal supplies donated at local merchants and individuals, together with human food, then distributes these items to local food banks.  This year's drive will benefit the Bay Ridge Senior Center, on 4th and Ovington Avenues. For more information on this year's food drive and the location of participating merchants, please click here.


If you wish to donate to the mission of our Animal Ministry, you can mail a check or money order to St. Philip's at, 1072 80th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11228. Please make the check payable to "St. Philip's," and note that the donation is to be directed to the animal ministry. We are currently collecting funds for our annual food drive for seniors and their pets.  Monies donated will be used solely for the animal ministry and will be acknowledged.


Thank you.

 

 

For more information on NYC ACC and its work with animals, click here.

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