A Franciscan monastery in Cochabamba, Bolivia has welcomed a new member to its service. In Catholic tradition, St. Francis of Assisi is the patron saint of animals, so it only makes sense that this sacred fold would allow a little dog to join them. The pup, a Miniature Schnauzer named Carmelo, was originally a stray that was picked up by a local rescue organization. From there, he went to the monastery.
His new position has earned Carmelo a more proper title – Friar Bigotón. “Bigotón” is the Spanish word for “mustache,” and clearly suits the cutest member of the monastery. Even better, he’s received a tiny Franciscan habit to wear around. And go around he certainly does! “His life is all about playing and running,” fellow friar Jorge Fernandez told The Dodo. “Here, all of the brothers love him very much. He is a creature of God.”
The adorable Schnauzer can be found “preaching” to the fish, keeping the brothers company and most importantly, raising awareness for rescue animals throughout the world. Friar Bigotón came from Proyecto Narices Frías (Cold Nose Project), a rescue group that hopes to find other homeless pets forever families, regardless of where they live. “If only all the churches of our country adopt a dog and care for him like Friar Bigotón,” the group wrote in a post on Facebook, “we are sure that the parishioners would follow his example.”