The feast of St. Francis of Assisi is again on the horizon. The feast of this saint is also a popular time for pet blessings. I see it as an opportune time for me to tell you about my two books that focus on the question of the fate of our pets in the next life.
My book Will I See My Dog in Heaven? (published by Paraclete Press in Brewster, Massachusetts) has now been developed as a second book, entitled I Will See You in Heaven.
The basic question that both books are trying to answer is: Will we see our dogs and other pets (cats, gerbils, rabbits and parrots) in heaven? It’s an important question for many people because so many of us become very fond of our pets—and some are keenly interested in whether they will see them again in the next life.
While I was doing book signings of the first book Will I See My Dog in Heaven?, I was surprised at how often readers whose pets had died would break into tears while they were talking to me about the book. If I asked them if they would like me to add “in memory of Rover” to my signature, they seemed to be emotionally moved all the more!
The new book has a special dedication page that lets people personalize it as a gift to a relative or friend to keep their pet “in loving remembrance.” The page provides a space for the name of the recipient as well as the pet’s name.
Comparing the two books
The title of the new book, I Will See You in Heaven, offers an affirmative answer to the question posed by the first book: Will we see our pets in heaven?
Many things are the same about the two books. Both books provide lots of evidence from Scripture, from Christian tradition and from the life of St. Francis that there will be other creatures besides humans enjoying life with God in heaven. Both books answer yes to the question: Will there be animals and other creatures in heaven?
There are a number of differences in the two books. The new book is an easier read. It is a condensed version of the original book, and its smaller size and gift-book format make it quite attractive. Parts of the first book are more theologically complex, and some readers might be happy not to have to wrestle with those complexities. Others might prefer that very challenge.
The main theological points are found in both books. And most of the important stories from Scripture and the life of St. Francis arguing for the presence of animals in heaven remain in both books.
Because St. Anthony Messenger Press is a distributor of both Friar Jack’s books (published by Paraclete Press), we are making a special offer to our readers for both I Will See You in Heaven and Will I See My Dog in Heaven? By purchasing the books from St. Anthony Messenger Press, you will receive a copy of the book personally signed by Friar Jack Wintz, O.F.M., each for only $11.99. In both cases, this is a discount from the list price of $14.95. Order the books here.
Dear Friar Jim, I am 71 years old and a 12-year ordained Deacon for the Archdiocese of Miami. Your writings have touched me time after time but today’s was especially powerful, personally. I can also use it in my ministry at a woman’s prison. Thank you for your faithfulness, your openness and your willingness to let the Spirit minister through your writings. Blessings, Deacon Bob
Dear Friar Jim, Thank you for your beautiful reflection on how God accepts our worst and woundedness. Your hope-filled message of God’s unconditional love makes me feel like I’m wrapped in his mercy and forgiveness. Jill
Thank you, Friar Jim, for your wisdom about offering our brokenness and woundedness to Christ. It is so countercultural to do that! We live in a culture that honors accomplishments, beautiful exteriors, upward mobility, earning money. To lift up our wounds goes against what society values. Annie
A:When we share our failings and faults with Jesus, it is a true sign of trust in his absolute love for us and out trust in him. Friar Jim