Dogs, cats, rabbits, ducks, gerbils and even a horse joined parishioners at some Sunday services for the annual St. Francis Festival Procession and Blessing of the Animals. Such services were held from coast-to-coast and included St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York and churches in Denver, Missouri and Minnesota.
At St. John's Episcopal Cathedral in Denver, Helen Fair helped a friend with a tortoise-shell cat and five kittens.
"They need to be blessed; they're heathens," she said.
When the congregation began singing the hymn, "All creatures of our God and King," barks, yaps and yowls echoed through the cathedral's stone arches.