SOUTHINGTON - Itâ€™s not only humans who need blessings. Itâ€™s animals too.
Thatâ€™s exactly what the Very Reverend Joseph Krusienski did all Saturday morning at Holy Trinity Church during the parishâ€™s first ever Blessing of Animals.
â€śIâ€™m a believer that animals are creations of God,â€ť Krusienski said. â€śThey have feelings.â€ť
Animals are more than just pets, Krusienski said. They have their own unique skills, like a heightened sense of smell, that allow them to do various jobs as service animals.
â€śGod gives us everything - and gives everyone a little bit of something,â€ť he said.
Pet owners of cats and dogs came through to have their animals receive the blessing. They also donated money, pet food and supplies to the Southington Animal Rescue. The church will be raising money and donations through the end of the month.
Susan Locks brought in her 14-year-old Bengal cat Sandy.
â€śItâ€™s just important to have an animal be blessed just like we like to be blessed,â€ť said Locks.
Alicia and Bill Peck brought in their 2-year-old Chihuahua P-Nut, who wore a sweater for the occasion.
â€śItâ€™s a fun day to come out, bring the dog out and get him out of the house,â€ť Alicia Peck said.
Abby, a 5-year-old rescue dog from Georgia, was very excited to receive her blessing, and to get treats.
â€śItâ€™s nice to have her be blessed,â€ť said owner Kate Soboleski. â€śSheâ€™s a great joy to our family.â€ť
Abby has had some health issues, so Soboleski is praying for a long, healthy life for Abby. She said the dog is â€śbest budsâ€ť with her 9-year-old son.
â€śAnimals are truly a blessing for all of us,â€ť said Arlene Strazzulla, Soboleskiâ€™s mother. â€śWe can learn a lot from them.â€ť
â€śI just feel like animals deserve any help we can give them,â€ť she added.
Though this was only the first year, Marilyn Folcik, president of the parish and Strazzullaâ€™s sister, hopes it can be an annual event.
â€śWe try to do something for the community,â€ť she said. â€śPets are such an integral part of our lives.â€ť
Michelle Jalbert can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.