Blessed Be Thy Pet

November 02, 2010

On Halloween afternoon, a small group gathered together on the lawn outside Knowles Memorial Chapel for a special service. It wasn’t for All Saints Day, or in remembrance of those who have passed. It was for those who have paws.

Although it was open to all of our animal companions, the attendance was made up of dogs of every size and description. Dean Patrick Powers read several quotes attributed to St. Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals, and then blessed each canine by name. Special intentions included the alleviation of thunderstorm fear and a lessened amount of barking. After being sprinkled with holy water from the River Jordan, the dogs took “communion” in the form of IAMS biscuits.

“People sometimes ask me if animals will be in heaven. I say, ‘They’d better be!’” said Powers.

The blessing formally ended with the reading of the Saint’s famous prayer. Pet owners stayed afterward for short while to talk and let their furry companions take advantage of the “doggie social.”

By Jennifer Ritter (Class of 2013)

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