- Associated Press - Saturday, October 10, 2015

SAGINAW, Mich. (AP) - A priest in Saginaw has blessed 17 dogs and one cat as part of a tradition observed in honor of Saint Francis of Assisi.

The Saginaw News reports (https://bit.ly/1MnCS7X ) that the Rev. Andy Booms of the Cathedral of Mary of the Assumption on Saturday sprinkled holy water over the pets brought to the church steps by their owners.

Booms says “animals are an important part of peoples’ spiritual lives” and that “domestic animals demonstrate communion with God.”

Saint Francis of Assisi was a 13th century friar known for his love of animals. Similar pet blessings are performed at other churches around the country.

Geri Rudolf had two dogs blessed Saturday by Booms. Rudolf says the dogs bring her such happiness that “they should get the blessing” she gets.

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Information from: The Saginaw News, https://www.mlive.com/saginaw

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