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Animals great and small blessed to honor St. Francis
October 5, 1998
Web posted at: 11:29 a.m. EDT (1529 GMT)
SAN FRANCISCO (CNN) -- At first, it looks like the zoo has come to church. But the blessing of animals held annually around the world on the first Sunday of October carries on a centuries-old Christian tradition giving thanks for the creatures who serve mankind.
The blessings also commemorate St. Francis of Assisi, the
patron saint of animals, for whom San Francisco was named.
The Italian saint, who died in 1226, was well-known for his
preaching, poverty and gentleness. Tradition holds that
animals responded to his kindness by listening to his
True or not, the service held Sunday in downtown San
Francisco brought together some natural adversaries who, on
this occasion, declared a truce. See for yourself in this
report from Correspondent Rusty Dornin.
|CNN's Rusty Dornin was on hand for the animal blessing