The first Sunday in October marks St. Francis Day, a day when people take their animals to their nearest church for some much-needed God infusion, all in honor of St. Francis of Assisi. Scores of masters and their human personal assistants showed up to San Francisco's Grace Cathedral to receive blessing. According to Grace, "The blessing of the animals is symbolic of the love that St. Francis of Assisi showed for all created beings. St. Francis of Assisi is the patron saint of San Francisco, servant to the poor and lover of all creation."

The Very Rev. Dr. Jane Shaw—educated as an undergraduate at Oxford, with an M.Div. from Harvard and a Ph.D. in History from UC Berkeley, by the way—performed the ceremony. And Sally Kuchar, editor of Curbed SF and friend of SFist, also had her pooch, Skippy, a Chihuahua/Jack Russell Terrier mix, blessed on Sunday.

"I went to the 11am service, which is the most formal of the day," Kuchar explained to SFist. "That said, any stuffiness was taken out of the situation by the presence of so many dogs, cats, and even birds and stuffed animals. Dogs rolled onto their backs to let the kids rub their bellies. A cat that looked like grumpy cat nearly escaped. One guy even brought two cages full of his birds. Occasionally when everyone was singing a hound or two would join in."

Kuchar also Rainbow High'd Skippy for the holy event. She adds, "Skippy wore a brand new black leather collar. The only animal I saw sporting an outfit was a bulldog in a Niners jersey."

Here are some pics from Sunday's service. Enjoy. Arf.