Monday, October 5, 2009

Milo and St.Francis..

EACH OCTOBER, INCLUDING THIS YEAR ON OCT. 4, 2009, thousands of people flock to the Episcopal Cathedral of St. John the Divine, in NYC, with a huge array of animals. Pets of all descriptions, birds, rabbits, lizards, cats, dogs, this year even a camel, parade through the Church to be blessed during a celebration of St. Francis of Assisi. Four thousand lined up to enter this spectacle, which has become the largest animal blessing in the world.
Wanting to make things easier for myself, I decided to take advantage of this Episcopal tradition at the Church of the Heavenly Rest, which is so much more convenient to me, being across from the park, just a couple of blocks away from where I live. So I thought how special it would be to pack Milo into his snug carrier, and tote him off for some blessings. I sort of forgot that I would have to battle all nine of his lives to convince him that being zipped up in a claustrophobic chamber was a good idea.
There are docile pets who sweetly cuddle in the arms of loved ones. Under the best of conditions Milo isn't one of them. Not only did this scaredy cat not make it to the church on time, he reminded me what having claws is all about! What was I thinking? Maybe camels can make it to church, but an independent cat? Let it be known that St. Francis, gentle soul and hovering spirit, when summoned by a trembling supplicant (me, not Milo), laid calming hands on both of us. I am grateful to be rid of unreasonable desires, and Milo, happy enough to cough up a hair ball in peace.


14 comments:

Alaine said...

A lovely thing to do but half way through reading I could see kitty escaping, screeching through a sea of legs!

Dominic Rivron said...

Trying to take our collection of cats to a church like that doesn't bear thinking about!

The cathedral reminds me of the one in the town I was born in, Lincoln (UK).

Lyn said...

Hi Alaine-
I have a feeling that not all of the animals were well behaved..still, a blessing is a blessing!

Lyn said...

Hi Dominic-
It does seem like maddness, yet it keeps happening..
Your cathedral must be quite beautiful also!

Jeane said...

amen! and thank god it only comes once a year! dear sweet milo - I have a dear sweet wee bird who clings to her perch for dear life most of the time - she is madly in love with her mate and only now will venture out for a short period before she returns to her safge place - sigh :)

Lyn said...

Hi Jeane-
I don't think Milo will ever feel secure..and he'll have to get his blessings at home!
Love your tweety bird and her tender feelings!!

Poetikat said...

I'm very familiar with these blessings. I went to St. Francis of Assisi Catholic school and church as a child and young adult. We took various cats up to the parking lot of the church to be blessed. Fortunately, we did not have quite the time you and Milo had (that reminded me of a trip that Gilbert had to make to the vets. He turned from docile, gentlest of creatures to a shrieking, biting, clawing harpy!)
Your last line is priceless.

Lyn said...

Hi Kat-
Thanks..Yes, going to the vet generally puts me on the disabled list..I'm the one who needs ER!

Derrick said...

Hi Lyn,

I thought you would have figured who the boss is by now! And much safer all round not negotiating the aisle behind a camel! Blessings on you and Milo.

willow said...

This is a lovely tradition. I must have been picking up on the vibe, since I was strangely compelled to post St. Francis on my sidebar.

Lyn said...

Hi Derrick-
Yes, one would think so..but cats don't change..
and blessings to you, my friend!
Behind a camel..hmmm...

Lyn said...

Hi Willow-
A nice coincidence!..I think I'll never make it to the church with Milo...
He's the boss, after all!!

A Cuban In London said...

Fun tale about Milo. Maybe he was expecting the pontiff to apologise for all those sex scanddals before blessing him. And claws, as well. Oh dear, I pity you!

Your post reminded me of our very own St Francis de Asisi convent in old Havana and the place where I saw many classical concerts when I still lived in Cuba many years ago. It was magical.

Thanks for the post.

Greetings from London.

Lyn said...

Greetings to a Cuban-
I don't think the Episcopalians align themselves with the pontiff,(didn't Henry VIII take care of that?), but all apologies are accepted!
I've always been drawn to the setting of a convent for special events such as a concert. I would have loved being in the one you attended in Havana.

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