THE new fire season on the Far South Coast of NSW has already started with numerous call outs and the first fire danger day on Thursday.
Fittingly, Cobargo Anglican Church is holding a special service this Saturday, October 12 to bless all those who work in the Rural Fire Service (RFS).
The church is inviting all brigades, members and friends to attend the “Blessing of the Rural Fire Service Fleet” at the Cobargo Anglican Church in Hoyer Street at 9am.
The Cobargo Anglican Church also held a service last Sunday to bless animals where community members brought their pets along to be blessed.
Attending that service was Janet Doolin’s “fire dog” Muffin.
Janet has made him a jacket out of her old RFS jacket with the NSW Rural Fire Service reflector right along the back.
Muffin is expected to be on duty at this Saturday’s Blessing of the Fire Fleet.
The annual Blessing of Animals service meanwhile was held at Cobargo Anglican Church on Sunday, October 6.
This day was chosen as being close to the feast day of St Francis of Assisi, noted for his rapport with animals.
As Rev. Stephen Rigby blessed all present, it seemed at times that there were more dogs than people involved; but they were very well behaved and no fights broke out.
The dogs were well behaved too; possibly due to the absence of any cats at the service.
Some caged birds and a broody chook were generally ignored by the aloof canines and nobody disgraced themselves, much to the relief of the volunteer church cleaners.
The well-behaved pets participated in the singing of “All woof Creatures of our God woof woof and King”, and then settled down for the rest of the service.
One owner evicted her recalcitrant dog for continually disrupting the service with excited barking.
Singing of “All things bright chirp chirp and beautiful” was followed by an admonition for the pets to be fed, sheltered from wind and weather, shielded from terror and torment, for their wounds to be healed and their grievances to be alleviated.
Rev Rigby blessed each animal with a sprinkling of water from a wattle frond.
One hen nearly missed out on the sprinkling but righteousness and equality prevailed.
All pets were blessed with good health, tolerance for those who are different and loyalty to their owners.
Rev Rigby gave thanks for the kindness and wisdom of those who have stewardship over all creatures great and small.