St. Francis has been standing watch over the animals here for a long time. Many of the stories that surround the life of St. Francis deal with his love for animals.
It is said that, one day, while Francis was traveling with some companions, they happened upon a place in the road where birds filled the trees on either side. Francis told his companions to "wait for me while I go to preach to my sisters the birds".
I believe that the little statue in the garden is symbolic of the live that we have for all the creatures here on the farm. There is an opossum that comes to feed at night from the seeds dropped by the many birds that come to the feeders. Bobcats and deer roam the woods. Snakes, turtles and frogs enjoy the wetland near the house. Every creature lives without fear of us harming them.
It would be great if we could live in harmony and respect as described in the following prayer:
"You created the world to serve humanity's needs and to lead them to You. By our own fault we have lost the beautiful relationship which we once had with all your creation. Help us to see that by restoring our relationship with You we will also restore it with all Your creation. Give us the grace to see all animals as gifts from You and to treat them with respect for they are Your creation. We pray for all animals who are suffering as a result of our neglect."