Animal Padre's
Christians Against All Animal Abuse
"Christ’s redemption is for the whole of creation!"

From Autumn 2006 Issue

Spiritual Radiance Following a Service Of Animal Blessing

Here we have just two of the photos snapped by Doreen – after she’d left her seat at the organ – following the service of animal blessing which was in the local Welsh Baptist Church. Such a service is always an inspiration and, following it, the press took a photo of myself which was included in a feature write up that then appeared in the Monday evening’s edition of the

Joy & Elfen with Edward

Chrissie & Trevor with Whiskers

FLINTSHER LEADER, under the heading: OUR LOCAL HERO. It read as follows

‘A RETIRED Flintshire vicar who recreates the spirit of St Francis of Assisi by blessing our four legged friends has been nominated as a hero for taking care of everyone. The Rev James Thompson, of Holywell, yesterday held his ninth annual animal blessing service at Bethel Chapel and it is this ceremony that has gained him hero status amongst those who know him.

Sheila Stewart, of the Capricorn Animal Rescue, Padeswood, nominated the Rev Thompson for his selfless devotion to everyone he knows. "He is always there to help people," says Sheila. "And though he is known as the Animal Padre, he is there for people as well. He seems to take care of everybody, she says "That is why I wanted to nominate him.

Rev Thompson, 76, and known affectionately as the Animal Padre, still offers his pastoral services to local residents, despite having been retired for 10 years. For the Rev Thompson the animal services, which he has performed all over Europe, play a key role in his faith. "People ask me if there will be animals in Heaven, he says. "I say that if there was room in the Garden of Eden, then there must be room in Heaven.

But the real purpose of this modern day St Francis's mission is to generate respect for the vulnerable, a message he believes should resonate across society and a message he learned as a child. "I was first inspired to dedicate myself to the needs of animals by a great Quaker teacher at the Council School in Holywell," he said. 

It was in 1983, during the period when he fulfilled the post of a senior hospital chaplaincy in Aberdeen that the Rev Thompson - having pioneered his animal blessings since 1971 earned the label of the Animal Padre. This title was given to him by one of the patients and he happily uses it to this day, but as far as being a hero, the Rev Thompson is not so sure. “T am happy to have the title of Animal Padre, he says. "But as for being a hero, I really don't know if I am one of those All I do is try to send out a message that the vulnerable should be cared for, whether it is animal or human. This is what I do in life.’

I am grateful to dear Sheila Stewart, founder of Capricorn Animal Rescue, who – certainly unknown to myself! - put me forward for this local award. Regrettably, she had not been able to attend the service herself due to temporary illness, most probably resulting from over working at her sanctuary.

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