2001-10-11 / Top Stories

Special Blessings For Animals — Great And Small

Special Blessings For Animals — Great And Small

Father Tedone blesses the pets and their owners.Father Tedone blesses the pets and their owners.

While those wonderful, special dogs who bravely searched for survivors of the World Trade Center disaster were dutifully blessed on the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi last Thursday, Canarsie held its traditional Blessing of the Animals at the Shrine of St. Jude. Rev. Mike Tedone officiated at the October 4th ceremony, blessing dogs and cats and domestic animals who were obviously gathering on the front lawn of the church to do a little socializing too.

Traditionally, since Canarsiens are as proud of their pets as they are of their community, churches and schools celebrate the feast of St. Francis by following the teachings of this saint who is always depicted, in museum paintings or sculptures in churches around the world, surrounded by feathered or furred friends. Since the churches and schools here are aware of this love we have for our little charges, they put aside time to see that they receive the blessings of the church.

The special blessing read by Father Tedone said, "The animals of God’s creation inhabit the skies, the earth and the sea. They share in the ways of human beings and have a part of our lives. Francis of Assisi recognized this when he called the animals, wild and tame, his brothers and sisters."

Photos by Lisa-Gaye Headley


Dee & Toto (from the Wizard of Oz?) prepare to be blessed twice.Dee & Toto (from the Wizard of Oz?) prepare to be blessed twice.
Little Devon and his mother hold Koko.Little Devon and his mother hold Koko.Thomas and Kevin handle their Chihuahua and Pit Bull. There were also parakeets, turtles and other exotic animals on hand for the traditional blessing.Thomas and Kevin handle their Chihuahua and Pit Bull. There were also parakeets, turtles and other exotic animals on hand for the traditional blessing.

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