Hello and welcome to Day 78 of Pray for Ryde with only one more week to go until we have completed 2020 hours of prayer. My name is Reverend Kerry Birch and I am the minister of Ryde Baptist Church. Today we are praying for Vets & Rescue Centres in the Ryde area.
Anyone who knows me well knows that I am the least likely person to be talking about pets. In recent years, the only pet I have kept, and that unsuccessfully, was a single goldfish. However, pets are valued members of many households, and for the lonely can quite literally be a lifeline.
For some people, the animals in their lives are guide dogs, hearing dogs, or have been trained to pick up on the first signs of seizure, coma or fit. There are many working animals locally, working from stables or farms.
There are animals whose welfare are being looked after by conservation groups, some of which are protected on the Island, such as the ubiquitous red squirrel. Wildlife becomes endangered when inappropriate development encroaches on its habitat. Even domestic animals can suffer from cruelty or neglect and are grateful for rescue and care.
We are reminded that one of the first jobs for the first human being was to name the animals. In Genesis 2:19-20 we read,
‘Now the Lord God had formed out of the ground all the wild animals and all the birds in the sky. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name. So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds in the sky and all the wild animals.’
Long before Doctor Dolittle, St Francis of Assisi gained a reputation as a lover of the environment and animals, and even has him preaching to the birds. The painter Giotto includes among his famous frescos the depiction of the first nativity scene with real animals surrounding the manger of the Christ-child.
So, we pray for those who look after animals within the Ryde area. We pray for the vets, including Island Vet Care, Pet Doctors and the Medina Veterinary Group; for those vets who look after working animals as well as domestic pets. We pray for the dog groomers, who work from a base or a van.
We pray for those who rescue and rehouse animals, including Cats Protection, Dog Rescue, the RSPCA, and others. We pray for those who care for the habitats of animals, including the local wildlife trust, conservation groups, and the statutory authorities responsible for planning and the environment.
We pray for those people who have animals in their care, at home or at work. We pray for those who rely on their animals for their safety, or for their companionship. We particularly pray for those who are finding it difficult in these hard times to be able to feed and look after their pets properly. Indeed, we pray for all, who like the very first human being, know their special animals by name.
We finish with the Prayer of St Francis:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace
Where there is hatred, let me sow love
Where there is injury, pardon
Where there is doubt, faith
Where there is despair, hope
Where there is darkness, light
And where there is sadness, joy
O Divine Master, grant that I may
Not so much seek to be consoled as to console
To be understood, as to understand
To be loved, as to love
For it is in giving that we receive
And it’s in pardoning that we are pardoned
And it’s in dying that we are born to Eternal Life
Please join us this evening at 7pm for our daily Zoom prayer meeting: