CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — Several pet owners took their pets to OSF Hospital on Tuesday for a unique service: they were blessed during the Feast of Saint Francis.
The service was a way to celebrate the life of Saint Francis and his love for all animals. A priest spoke a blessing over the pets and splashed them with holy water.
OSF in Danville paired this celebration with donations for the Vermilion County Animal Shelter. They’ll continue to accept donations in their lobby the rest of the week.
One pet owner said he uses this day to celebrate all pets and the comfort they bring to their owners.
“We use this day to celebrate and honor these wonderful creatures that bring so much joy and peace and entertainment to our mission partners who spend their whole life serving our patients,” said Director of Pastoral Care Paul Bittorf.
He said this is his second year bringing his cat to be blessed. He calls it the answer to her rambunctious nature.
The hospital said this event is a great way to usher in their 100-year celebration.
OSF Sacred Heart in Danville is accepting laundry soap, bleach, paper towels, non-clumping kitty litter, tissues, wet cat food in a can, dog food and towels. Donations can be dropped off at the doghouse in the lobby.