He’s a priest who has focused on “saving souls,” and now he is busy “saving dogs” too! Father Jim Hynes serves as a Catholic priest at Our Lady of Angels on the West Side of San Antonio, Texas. He takes confessions, serves Holy Communion and roams the streets looking for wounded, hungry and stray dogs.

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Credit: http://www.ksat.com

“I find it hard to pass them on the street, so I pick them up,” Hynes said. “I consider it part of my ministry. These are living beings and they suffer. Pope Francis has spoken about it.”

When Father Hynes speaks about these animals, the Irish born priest often clasps his hands together and says, “We’re all connected, humans and the rest of God’s creation.”

Hynes reminds people that the present Pope, Francis, is named for a patron saint who loved nature and its creatures. “Francis of Assisi called the animals sisters and brothers.”  A statue of St. Francis of Assisi stands tall right outside of Father Hynes parish. So the good Father gets his mission honestly: “To alleviate human suffering and nonhuman suffering.” Hynes has rescued at least 300 homeless dogs and paid for the cost of the care mostly out of his own pocket.

“I’ve put a number of my veterinarian’s children through college,” Hynes mused.

With the help of local groups like God’s Dogs, foster homes have been found for the Father’s dogs from Cape Cod all the way to Seattle.

Jim Hynes knows that he has only saved a fraction of the stray dogs in his city. “What kind of message does that send our children?” Hynes said. “We have a responsibility to protect and defend these creatures.”

What a great story, what a great mission, what a great man. Share this with your friends.