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Rome is easy

Blessing of Animals on St Anthony day

RomeIsEasy logo 2In Rome we still have a very nice and old tradition: our animals are blessed during the St. Anthony day on January 17th!
At the beginning the location was the church of St. Antony close by Santa Maria Maggiore. Starting from early in the morning men, mostly peasants, arrived in the city with animals: pigs, cows, horses, dogs, chickens...there was a strange farm in the city centre!

 

The blessing of the animals was a very event for poor people that needed them to work and to eat so they wished that with the help of God everything was going to be easier.

Today we still do that but in another church that is Sant'Eusebio in Piazza Vittorio (Esquilino hill) and since then it has changed just a bit: less farm animals (but we still have) and more pets as dogs, cats, birds... and for a day the city center became like a strange zoo!
In 2013 some horses and other animals were blessed in Saint Peter's Square in the Vatican by the Cardinal Comastri!

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