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SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) - A Savannah priest is offering blessings to dogs, cats and other pets in honor of the patron saint of animals.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Savannah says the Rev. J. Gerard Schrek will bless pets of the faithful Friday afternoon in Layfayette Square, next to the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist. Schrek serves as rector of the cathedral in downtown Savannah.

The blessings coincide with the feast day honoring St. Francis of Assisi, who was known for his love of animals.

The Savannah diocese governs Catholic churches with more than 77,000 parishioners across 90 counties in southern Georgia.