Today, Wednesday, June 17th, is my family's beloved Opal's 7th birthday—she's the black and white sweetheart pictured above with her doting uncle; the other bearded beauty is Winsome, Opal's loving sister (not a direct sister, but sibling in the way that all goats participate genetically with every goat that has ever descended from the five known DNA strains of
Capra aegagrus hircus
). As usual, they are more interested in Fritos than in the birthday card, but they've also been known to nibble on the paper!
It turns out that the Nigerian dwarf miniature breed of dairy goat is fairly hypoallergenic, so we built a barn, and began to learn about one of the very oldest human-to-nonhuman partnerships in all of our history—10,000 years and counting. So, in this month of having compassion as our congregational theme, I'm well aware of the ways that I have been coaxed into increased creaturely love by Opal and Winsome.
How have you been taught to love or to laugh or to cry by the pets who brighten your days and comfort your nights?
In what ways have you, through your interactivity with the animal kingdom of which we are all a part, reconsidered the binary divide between the human and the nonhuman?
How have your animals been a blessing to your life? How might you be a blessing to them in return?
As we prepare to head into summer months,
I invite you to bring your animal to this Sunday's Coffee Hour (June 21)
—a live creature or a drawing, a plush toy or a photograph, a present companion or a treasured memory!
Since my pets will be unable to join us physically, my nieces put together a very short video so that you can get to know our goatie girls, Opal and Winnie.
Rev. Craig :)