Well, this one is different.
There’s a church in California that is offering worship services for dogs–literally. The Los Angeles congregation is holding half hour meetings with “individual doggie beds, canine prayers, and an offering of doggie treats” for those four legged creations that can make it. One question I might have is whether you can count those dogs in the daily attendance figures. It might be hard to get them to fill out a guest card though.
I’m all for finding ways to reach out into the community, especially in light of this situation where the membership is aging and the attendance is dwindling. It’s so difficult to reinvent the church’s role in a changing neighborhood. There are fewer things more discouraging than to be part of a congregation that was at one time vibrant but now is doing all it can to keep the doors open, as if that is the main focus of a church. However, I am not sure how to relate to this kind of worship experience. Ministry is contextual, and I commend any pastor and congregation who attempts to get beyond it walls into the community.
I’ve heard about cowboy churches, but not so much about “cow churches.” I’m sure these would be moooving to be a part of it. If this canine congregation works, then we can all go down to the zoo for regular worship services. Of course, this is California and Los Angeles we’re talking about.
With respect to dog lovers out there, I’d like to know how this LA worship style relates to others.