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Blessing of the Animals

Unfortunately, the 2020 Blessing of the Animals was canceled due to COVID-19 concerns. We hope it will return in 2021. 

2019 Blessing of the Animals

Congregation Shir Ami’s 2019 Blessing of the Animals event was a little smaller than normal but still fun! Rabbi Rebecca Reice conducted our meaningful and joyful service in the backyard of our building at LOUU.  Our customary ceremonial walk after the service concluded was around the back wild space on the labyrinth.  Rabbi Reice individually blessed all of the animals present and provided certificates and blessings in absentia for those who could not attend (i.e. several cats, a guinea pig, a mouse, a rat, a horse, and a few other beloved pets).  Our featured guest speakers were two teens from our community who have committed themselves to volunteering with animal shelters, collected supplies and made donations. They focused their projects at the Austin Humane Society and by volunteering with Rescue Readers. Rescue Readers is a program of the Williamson Country Regional Animal Shelter.

2018 Blessing of the Animals

This delightful, free, family-friendly event, was great fun for people (and pets!) of all faiths! As always, Rabbi Rebecca Reice led a beautiful service and blessed each of the animals present.  Margaret Hollembeak of Georgetown Animal Outreach was our special featured guest, sharing information about her work caring for and managing the population of community cats in Williamson County.  Attendees were asked to bring donations of cat food (wet or dry) to our Blessing of the Animals event to help these community cats in need.

2017 Blessing of the Animals

Congregation Shir Ami’s 2017 Blessing of the Animals event was great fun! Rabbi Rebecca Reice conducted a warm and joyful service, individually blessed all of the animals present, and provided certificates and blessings in absentia for those who could not attend.  Our featured guest speaker was Misty Valenta, volunteer coordinator at the Williamson County Regional Animal Shelter, which we also accepted donated goods for. 

Attendees brought their pets for blessings, enjoyed a walk around the park with their pets, participated in the service, had fun with the photo booth, and visited with vendors representing a variety of animal related businesses.  

To see some photos and videos of the 2017 event, click on the following links.   

2016 Blessing of the Animals

Our 2016 Blessing of the Animals event was a great success!!  Rabbi Rebecca Reice led a warm and wonderful service which included joyful songs, blessings for our animal companions, a prayer to remember our beloved animal
companions who have passed from this world, a call to action to address the plight of companion animals in need, a ceremonial walk around the park, and fun activities for both our human and animal friends who were there. 

We collected many items which were donated to the Williamson County Regional Animal Shelter, and honored our primary event beneficiary for 2016, Puppy Mill Awareness Day Texas.

Mon, December 6 2021 2 Tevet 5782