Grace United Methodist Church in Columbia is responding to a cruel act with compassion, hope and giving.
The parking lot of the Harbison Boulevard church was the site of the burning of a pit bull puppy on Saturday, Nov. 12.
After prayerful reflection, church leaders decided to turn the heartbreaking incident into an opportunity to make a difference.
“We’re still processing it; everybody here is appalled,” said the Rev. Murray Snow, Grace UMC’s pastor. “We feel like the community has been violated, as well as the sanctity of the church property.
“We consider it holy ground, and God’s covenant is with all God’s creatures.”
The church has scheduled a “Blessing of the Animals” event at 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 19. Church and community members are invited to bring their pets or photos of their pets and take part in a prayer service. Attendees will have the opportunity to make a love offering, which will be donated to Pawmetto Lifeline, an animal rescue organization in the Harbison area.
“We want God’s love and grace to be reflected by the actions of the Harbison community’s coming together,” Snow said.
The Grace UMC congregation also is praying for the person who committed this horrendous act.
“No one is beyond God’s grace and God’s redeeming,” Snow said.
The Richland County Sheriff’s Department made an arrest late Monday. The puppy was burned so badly that authorities had to euthanize it.
Read The Advocate’s story here.