|Rejoicing in the beauty of the world|
Yesterday afternoon Fr. John Williams, aka Rebekah's dad, came out to the Ranch for our annual Blessing of the Animals.
And so we set out from the Pavilion towards the Village, where Missy, Barny, Abi, and Lady all reside.
|Barny gets a blessing|
|Michael's new fish tank|
After that we headed to Teresa House, home of Abi and Lady. Abi is enthralled with attention from anyone but a veterinarian, so she was delighted to sit in Fr. John's lap and receive her blessing. Lady watched amiably from a distance.
From there it was to the top of the haying field, the highest point on the Ranch.
Fr. John explained that St. Francis was considered strange by his contemporaries, because he so loved creation that he would stand in a field and dance, holding up his arms and spinning around. He urged us all never to worry about what other people say about us, but like St. Francis, to rejoice in the beauty of the world.
From the hill, the horses, donkeys, cows, foxes, fish, turtles, armadillos, skunks, racoons, wild pigs and all other creatures on the Ranch received their blessing.
|Natalie moves manure from the barn to the compost pile|
“And bless all the horse poop, too,” Kyle said earnestly, which elicited a few disapproving murmurs, but I knew Kyle was remembering what we'd told him about how the horse manure he collects and takes to the compost piles enriches and gives back to the earth.
Later on in the afternoon Jerry popped into my office and said, “I've got to run to Bloomer's and pick up some winter veggie packets. Be back in an hour.”
As I left my office, I saw him digging in the garden and went over to investigate. He'd bought brussels sprounts and broccoli, pansies and peas and was planting them in the beds. Our adolescent rooster was practicing crowing (pretty funny at this stage) and the evening sun slanted across the newly mown hay field.
In that moment, I knew exactly what St. Francis had been getting at.