The Animal Welfare Ministry team embraces our responsibility as stewards of God’s creation, and recognizes that a spiritual disconnection with God’s creatures has led to the unnecessary abuse and exploitation of animals for commercial gain, sport, and scientific discovery.
Our four-fold mission is to be the voice of the Episcopal Church in the Diocese of New Jersey against systemic practices of animal cruelty, degradation, and commercial exploitation, to provide the diocese with an education and awareness program for animal welfare concerns, to foster the celebration of our fellow creatures as a gift from God, and to provide pastoral counseling resources for the loss of a companion animal.
At present, our team consists of about 30 members spread throughout the diocese. Since our formation in April 2016 we have created a one-hour Education and Awareness program designed for parish forums, developed new liturgical resources, and selected various campaign topics for our advocacy work. Future plans include half-day diocesan Information events, pastoral counseling training for the loss of a companion animal, and creating a virtual space for dialogue on animal welfare issues.
This website is intended as a resource for individuals and parishes who wish to become more involved in animal welfare ministry. Search, and you will find
- Our brochure
- Animal Welfare news from around the diocese
- 24 ideas for becoming an animal friendly parish
- an invitation to host a parish education and awareness forum
- information on our current advocacy campaign on factory farming
- our “Meatless Monday” challenge
- liturgical resources
- links to other resources
We are founded on General Convention Resolutions of 2003, 2009 and 2012 that call the Episcopal Church to
- recognize that the responsible care of animals falls within the stewardship of God’s creation
- advocate for the ethical care and treatment of animals, and against husbandry methods that cause suffering, such as the conditions found in factory farms and puppy mills
- advocate for animal protection legislation and enforcement
- provide educational resources at the diocesan and parish levels about decisions that affect the lives and health of endangered species, farm food animals and domestic animals
- provide pastoral care for people who grieve the loss of a companion animal
For more information please contact Deacon Christopher Cox.
April 30, 2017, All Saints, Princeton
June 17, 2017, Trinity Cathedral, (Diocesan-wide forum)
St. Stephen’s, Waretown.
With the support of her rector, Fr. Terry Martin, Lin Murdoch has been leading the charge for animal welfare concerns at St. Stephen’s, Waretown. New ministries include a Saturday evening “pet friendly” service, a “Fill the Bowl” campaign to collect pet food and supplies for local animal shelters, and the formation of the “Friends of St. Francis” group to coordinate other animal welfare activities in the parish. Lin is active in the Humane Society of the USA and is a member of the diocesan animal welfare team.
Eating mercifully video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-Va6F3iQFc