Owners and pets gather for annual Albany church service - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Owners and pets gather for annual Albany church service

Church members and guests got to bring their pets to the service (Source: WALB) Church members and guests got to bring their pets to the service (Source: WALB)
The Albany Humane Society and Sally Wetherbee Adoption Center also adoptable pets (Source: WALB) The Albany Humane Society and Sally Wetherbee Adoption Center also adoptable pets (Source: WALB)
Owners and their animals both enjoyed the full service in the garden (Source: WALB) Owners and their animals both enjoyed the full service in the garden (Source: WALB)
Father Lee Lowrey (Source: WALB) Father Lee Lowrey (Source: WALB)
May Gillespie (Source: WALB) May Gillespie (Source: WALB)
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

One church in Albany opened its doors to more than 25 four legged guests. Owners and their pets got together to celebrate a church tradition Sunday morning.

The church service filled with furry paws.

In the episcopal church, St. Francis was a lover of animals. His memory is now honored by worshiping with man's best friend.

Sunday morning was all about worshiping with pets.

Saint Paul's Episcopal Church invited members and guests to bring their furry friends to its church service.

"The emphasis is really about being thankful for our pets but also on God's creation," said Lee Lowrey, Father of St. Paul's Episcopal Church.

Owners and their animals enjoyed a full service out in the memorial garden.

"This is a great time of year to do it, beautiful day," said Father Lowrey.

The tradition is longstanding in the episcopal church.

Episcopalians celebrate the Blessing of the Animals on a Sunday close to the Feast of St. Francis, which falls on October 4.

St. Francis was well known for his love of animals.

"I think it gives us a sense of joy, especially on a day like this," said Father Lowrey.

St. Paul's has turned the event into a crowd favorite.

The Albany Humane Society and the Sally Wetherbee Adoption Center brought along some dogs and cats that were up for adoption.

"They had a great time, I'm hoping to go home empty handed," said May Gillespie, Albany Humane Society board member.

The shelter spread the word about all the animals that were up for adoption to the church congregation.

"They are friendly. They just need some love," said Gillespie.

Pets even came up with owners to take communion.

For more information on how you can donate to the Albany Humane Society or adopt a shelter pet, visit their website here.

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