Those are people who talk the talk, and then there are those who walk the walk. And a priest in Brazil named Father João Paulo Araujo Gomes definitely falls into the latter category.
Father Gomes heads a parish in the city of Gravatá, and he allows stray dogs to come into his church during mass. Why, you ask? So the dogs can hopefully find homes with his parishioners.
Any dogs who wander the street are given ample opportunity to participate in mass so guests can get a look at them and decide if they’d like to give these forgotten pooches permanent homes. Father Gomes says, “They will always be able to enter, sleep, eat, drink their water and find shelter and protection, for this house is of God and they are of God.”
Father Gomes has taken the dogs into his rectory and during services they wander around, sleep, and sometimes even get in on the action, looking to be petted by the priest and his flock.
Because of Father Gomes’ charity and kindness, dozens of stray dogs have found forever homes in Gravatá – the kind-hearted priest has even adopted some of the dogs himself. He said, “I helped several dogs with serious health problems. Some of them I brought to the parish house, and they were later adopted. Three of them stayed with me. Today, they are my children and sleep in my bed.”
Be sure to follow Father Gomes on Facebook to keep up with all of these beautiful animals and their adventures.