All creatures great and small at Harborough church service

Maxine Buxton with Millie during a service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER
Maxine Buxton with Millie during a service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

More than 80 people and their pets managed to raise the woof at a special “pet service” at a Harborough church.

Among the multi-species congregation were dogs, rabbits, a chicken and a blue and yellow parrot. Oh, and some humans, obviously.

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

“I wasn’t sure what to expect” admitted Great Bowden vicar Rev Bryony Wood, who had organised her first pet service at the village church.

“So it was with huge relief that I saw people flocking up. The church was pretty packed.”

What’s the idea of a service for pets?

“Well, it’s because there are so many people round here who really cherish and value their pets and animals,” said The Rev Wood. “Animals are a part of life, especially in a place like Great Bowden.”

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

Another plus is that the unusual service attracts people who wouldn’t habitually go to church.

“And one of the lovely things about the service itself was the dogs woofed in all the right places” she added.

She hopes to hold the pet service again next year - and attract some larger animals like horses.

“We had carrots ready,” she said. “But in the end, the rabbit had them all!”

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets and the animal kingdom at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets and the animal kingdom at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets and the animal kingdom at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER

A service of thanksgiving and blessing for pets and the animal kingdom at St Peter and St Paul in Great Bowden. PICTURE: ANDREW CARPENTER