Church Dog

Posted by Censor Librorum on Dec 20, 2006 | Categories: Lesbian in a Catholic Sort of Way

Just before Mass started last Saturday, a young woman slid into the pew next to Lori and I; with her was a young black Lab. The dog wore a light green jacket announcing she was a guide dog in training. We realized the woman wasn’t blind when she picked up the missalette to read. Her husband and son sat in the pew in front of her. The son got one poke from behind to behave.

The dog lay quietly in the aisle until it was time for Communion. We lifted the kneeler up, and the dog came in and lay next to the feet of her trainer so people could line up in the aisle. When we stood up for Communion, the dog accompanied the young woman up to the altar, and then back around down the side aisle and into the pew. When the Communion line finally moved past our pew, the dog went back out into the aisle, next to her trainer.

Our priest has a golden retriever named “Monsignor,” and couldn’t resist stooping down to give the dog a pet during the recessional. The dog navigated the lady through the throng of worshippers, well-wishers and friends who always bunch up by the entrance.

I was quite impressed with the quiet dedication of both the guide dog and trainer. I never thought of it, but what a wonderful gift to a blind person or person who has trouble seeing to be able to go to church, meet with friends, and trust completely in the sight and step of a steady and faithful companion.

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