St. Thomas celebrates bluegrass and animals at special service

Published 3:21 pm Thursday, September 30, 2021

St. Thomas Episcopal Church, Elizabethton, will have a special service Sunday at 2 p.m. with a blessing of its animal family highlighted by bluegrass music by the church’s Doe River Ensemble.
“Everyone and every kind of critter is welcome,” said Father Tim Holder, priest and pastor at St. Thomas. “Bring a lawn chair, quilt or such, and join the congregation for some fine bluegrass music as we worship our Creator on the beautiful west lawn of the 1861 church,” said Carol Brodeur, warden at the historic church, who echoed Father Holder’s invitation.
Each animal brought to the service will be blessed and presented with a St. Francis medal, certificate, and treat.
Drive-by is also welcome. “Just pull up to the curb in front of the church at 815 E. Second St., and we’ll bless your animal family,” said Ms. Brodeur.
Bluegrass Professor Lee Bidgood of Appalachian Studies at East Tennessee State University will lead the music. St. Thomas offers Sunday bluegrass, country, and ballad music the first Sunday of each month at its service of the Lord’s Supper at 11 a.m. Ms. Janice Russell serves as parish musician at. St. Thomas.
Ms. Mary Harvey, a member of St. Thomas and a volunteer at the Carter County Animal Shelter, said the blessings will continue Monday afternoon at the shelter for each animal being cared for at the shelter.