Loving owners get blessings for pets

Photo by Dean Humphrey—The Rev. Hollis Wright blesses a ferret named Mr. Bear, held by its owner, Abbey Channel, during a pet-blessing ceremony Sunday at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in Grand Junction. Channel also brought her dog, Jackson, to the popular event, which raises awareness for local organizations that help local pets and owners.

Just before Sunday’s game between the New England Patriots and Denver Broncos, Tom Brady came to a Grand Junction church lawn to be blessed.

Well, sort of.

Technically, the Brady at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church wasn’t the famous quarterback for the Patriots, but instead was a 4-month-old cat named Thomasina Brady.

But, in all honesty, Thomasina answers to the name “Brady,” and she does like football, owner Cynthia Mill said. In fact, when Mill yells at the TV during a Pats game, Brady the cat comes running.

Thomasina Brady was one of dozens of pets brought to the annual Blessing of the Animals event at the Grand Junction Church on 27 1/2 Road, where the Prayer of St. Francis, a reading from Genesis, and a blessing was passed from the church on each animal for the coming year.

“...Give them health and happiness and long life, bless them in the days to come,” the program read.

The decision to bring her two boxers, Layla and Molly, to Sunday’s blessing was an easy one for Grand Junction’s Tasha Castillo.

Both dogs are under supervision after being diagnosed with skin cancer. Castillo purchased guardian angel tags for each of her dogs and brought them to the church for a holy blessing.

“We fell in love with their goofy personalities,” Castillo said, as the sister dogs never ventured far from Castillo’s legs Sunday.

Cats and dogs, dogs in particular, were the most popular animals blessed Sunday, but they weren’t the only pets blessed.

Grand Junction’s Abbey Channel brought her dog, Jackson, sure, but she also brought her 8-year-old ferret named Mr. Bear.

Rhiannon Ricks brought her tortoise Phil in a handy over-the-shoulder vented bag.

“I didn’t want to bring my dogs because they are all crazy,” said Ricks, 9.


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