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On Oct. 12 pets and their owners gathered on the lawn of Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Brandenburg for a Blessing of the Animals. The Blessing was held in honor of St. Francis of Assisi, patron saint of animals and the environment. Possibly the first environmentalist, St. Francis believed it is our duty to protect and enjoy nature as stewards of God’s creation. Whether dog or cat, each pet waited patiently as the Rev. Stephen Winsett, blessed it and presented the owner with a certificate.