Family pets get annual blessing in Fletcher Park

Meagan and Ben Meadows with Murphy

Meagan and Ben Meadows with Murphy

The 4th annual Family Pet Fair & Blessing of the Pets held Oct. 1 in Fletcher Park in San Marco, was bigger and better than ever. The benefit included pet adoptions, a charity “laundromutt” where at least 30 willing pooches were given a bath, silent auction, pet costume contest, many animal-related vendors and, of course the main event, Father John Oliver from St. Philip Neri, who blessed cats, dogs of all sizes, and an umbrella cockatoo.

Father John Oliver blesses Kaiya, a wheelchair-bound pit mix looking for a special home.

Father John Oliver blesses Kaiya, a wheelchair-bound pit mix looking for a special home.

Rebecca Miller with Davi

Rebecca Miller with Davi

Front, Lucas Shelton-Setser, Lorelai Scott (with mask), Angela Scott holding Sierra, who gazes at Blake Shelton-Setser.

Front, Lucas Shelton-Setser, Lorelai Scott (with mask), Angela Scott holding Sierra, who gazes at Blake Shelton-Setser.

“We’re grateful and blessed that so many in the community come out to enjoy and support this fundraising event each year,” said Becky Hamilton, chairman of St. Philip Neri Animal Ministry and advisor for Friends of Jacksonville Animals. “We’re always touched to witness the many people and their companion animals participating in the Blessing of the Pets.  We’re also grateful and thankful for the many wonderful vendors that participate.”

Proceeds of at least $5,000 from the popular fall event went to St. Philip Neri Animal Ministry and Saint Francis Animal Hospital to help pets in need of medical care.

Cheyenne Overby with her Bernedoodle Beau, 3, a cross between a poodle and a Bernese Mountain dog.

Cheyenne Overby with her Bernedoodle Beau, 3, a cross between a poodle and a Bernese Mountain dog.

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