The Church Cats

A Public Service Message from the Church Cat:
Easter Lilies and chocolates are lovely treats for humans, but they are lethal to cats (and chocolate can be lethal to dogs as well).
Please keep your Easter treats away from your pets!
Meet Simon!
To adapt a popular phrase, cats are what happens when you’re making other plans. After we lost Jake and Jeoffry, Fr. Warren planned to wait a while before looking for new feline residents. But you don’t find a cat - the cat finds you, and so it was that a little fellow we named Simon showed up in July 2012 and immediately took charge. Simon is now a strapping 15 pounds and always eager to make new friends, so stop by and say hello!
Simon at Vestry meeting
Simon attends a Vestry meeting
Simon meets Hudson
Are you a strange-looking cat?
Simon makes a friend
Simon is friendly with everybody.
hello Simon
Simon says hello!
cow kitty
Showing off some of his striking markings
Simon on chair
He’s made himself right at home ...
Simon on baby couch
Claiming the kitty bed ...
Simon with cat scratcher
... And the scratch-pad ...
Simon with turboscratcher
... And the ball-chase-scratcher toy.
Simon on computer
Time to get to work!
Simon and the Rector
Helping the Rector write email ...
Simon watches the printer
Quality control on the Sunday bulletins.

In Memoriam

Jeoffry and Jake died within a month of each other in the spring of 2012. We miss them terribly. These photos of them will remain here as memorials. An obituary of Jake which appeared in the Beacon Hill Times follows the photographs.

Jake and Jeoffry in the office
What are you doing up there?
The church cat population increased when Max came in from the cold - literally - after a snowstorm. Max now lives happily at the Rectory - see below.
portrait of Max
Max with box
Keeping the parish running ...
Jake says his prayers
Jake saying his prayers ...

... and Jeoffry monitoring the Annual Meeting
Exploring the Parish Gardens...
Jake on garden bench
Jeoffry in garden
Jeoffry and Jake in the garden looking around
Jeoffry and Jake in the garden looking the other direction
Jake disappearing into the flowers while Jeoffry looks on
Jake silly, Jeoffry attentive
Jeoffry behind a chair
A Poem for the Church Cats
Going to church: Jeoffry ...
Jeoffry outside the church doors
... and Jake
What cats do best: sleep! (Anywhere)
Jeoffry asleep in baby toy
Jake asleep in baby seat
Father Warren reminds the cats who keeps them fed...
Fr. Warren with the cats
Jake takes time to smell the flowers
Jake sniffing crocuses
"Supervising" preparations for Mass
supervising preparations for Mass
A favorite vantage point
cats atop closet in sacristy

What exactly does a Church Cat do? The 18th century poet Christopher Smart left us a lyrical, if eccentric, job description, which beautifully details the life of an honored feline (and explains where our Jeoffry got his name).

And why two Church Cats? Because no one cat could ever replace the incomparable Bradley!

Cats make reluctant subjects for portraiture.
Jake and Jeoffry with their 'Chief of Staff'

Come summer,
winter’s hearth huggers
find the parish garden,
join early comers,
lay back ears,
lash tails
at birds
and interlopers.

Morning sun haloes
Jeoffry’s black coat…
Jake’s black and white
accepts his washing ritual ~
and loving pats.
Morning coffee is a blessing
in the company
of cats.

June A. Knowles

For Jake and Jeoffry ~ our parish cats

September 4, 2005

Jake and Jeoffry under the influence of catnip
Jake obituary
Jake’s obituary from the Beacon Hill Times
letter to bht
a reader’s letter responding to the obituary
Other Advent Animals
Jake and Jeoffry may be the kings of the Hill, but they are not the only creatures associated with the Advent ...
Max and Lucy run the Rectory.
Max on table
lucy in the window
And then there are the wild creatures who live nearby...

A raccoon relaxing on the Parish House fire escape

"The sparrow hath found her an house" (Ps. 84:3) -
on the tympanum over the Mt Vernon Street doors
(see below - the nest is in the structure over Our Lord's head)

Quite possibly the most predator-unfriendly nesting site in Boston protects the nest from:
photo of red-tailed hawk perching on spire cross
This red-tailed hawk is frequently seen perching on the cross atop the spire