December 30, 2008

Remembering Our Four-legged Furry Friends

Thank you for believing in the S.A.P.P.Y. Pet Loss & Grief Support Group of San Antonio. Your support and prayers mean the world to us! And, thank you for participating in the 2008 Tribute to Tails.

The 6th Annual Tribute to Tails was a success, thanks to you! Dozens of pet parents from across our beautiful city of San Antonio filled the Parish Hall at St. Francis Episcopal Church December 13.

The music was SO awesome and the pet poems were truly inspirational. The message delivered by the Rev. Patrick Ormos was WONDERFUL and touched so many people. And the poem read by our good friend, Tom McGoldrick of Paws in Heaven, was absolutely precious. Plus, several organizations were on hand to share their missions for helping God's creatures. The evening was beautiful and everyone raised their lit candles toward the Heavens to pay tribute to their furry friends - gone, but NEVER forgotten. Afterwards, pet parents gathered for some fellowship time. We ate tasty treats and so did our furry friends who accompanied us. Whether you've sent a dog, cat, horse, hamster, frog, fish, bird or even an elephant to Heaven, you're not alone! Your grief is REAL and we are here for you. Every creature is important to God and to us! Tribute to Tails is a VERY unique event because not only do we honor the memory of our late furry friends, but we celebrate the pets in our lives today. It's not a sad time, it's a time of celebration and hope! And, it's an opportunity to meet other GREAT pet parents who share and understand your feelings.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Your friends,
Jim & Julie Wiley

Special Thanks to The 2009 Tribute to Tails Committe for ALL of their hard work and dedication and *those who provided their support to this event.

Pam, Carol and Travis Fink, Jeanette Mohr, Teri Ealey, Nora Ramirez, Frank Ballard, Boni & Charlie Hall, Dolph & Ana Tamayo, Yvette Ramirez, Jim Wiley. And, to our wonderful Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who made this event possible.

*Jaquie Baker, New Member Minister and the Rev. Dr. C. Patrick Ormos, Rector

St. Francis Episcopal Church, San Antonio, Texas

*Tom and SueAnn McGoldrick of Paws in Heaven Pet Crematory, Sattler, Texas

* Sarah Centeno, vocal artist, and her parents Mr. & Mrs. Centeno.

December 11, 2008

It's HERE!

The 6th Annual Tribute to Tails is this Saturday, December 13. Don't miss this VERY unique event - it's your opportunity to pay tribute to those precious and wonderful furry friends, alongside other amazing pet parents.

See you there!

November 27, 2008

Don't Forget! Saturday, Dec. 13

6th Annual Tribute to Tails
A unique opportunity to honor your precious furry friend - gone but NEVER forgotten.


Click on image to enlarge

Contact: Julie Wiley, Pamela Fink
(210) 216-0920
(210) 844-8484

Four Paws. One Tail. A Million Memories!
Pet owners to turn church hall into sea of lit candles in honor of furry friends
—Animal friends will be celebrated by their people—

(San Antonio, TX) You’ve probably heard this before: A house is NOT a home without an animal friend. That’s certainly the case for approximately 163 million Americans who own dogs and cats, according to the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association (APPMA) 2007-2008 National Pet Owners Survey. These faithful four-legged furry creatures have become a HUGE part of the lives of many people. It’s no wonder when their best friend dies they mourn, especially during the holiday season.

For many, this season marks the first major holiday without that special animal companion - gone, but NEVER forgotten. That’s why San Antonio Tribute to Tails has been organized; to help bring some comfort to pet owners grieving the loss of a family pet, and to help honor their late friend for the companionship they provided. Pet owners are invited to celebrate their furry friends with a VERY unique candlelight memorial, surrounded by portraits of their cherished pets.

This event is free and open to the public.

WHO: San Antonio Pet Owners PAWS to Pay Tribute to Departed Animal Friends, Santa Claws & Mrs. Paws.

WHAT: Tribute to Tails: Pet Candlelight Memorial

WHEN: Saturday, December 13, 6:30 - 7:30 p.m.

WHERE: St. Francis Episcopal Church, 4242 Bluemel Road
(Parish Hall)

October 17, 2008

Don't miss this year's "Tribute to Tails" Candlelight Memorial


Come be part of a heart-warming event, dedicated to your special animal companion - gone, but NEVER forgotten!

Saturday, December 13, 2008
6:30 p.m.

St. Francis Episcopal Church
4242 Bluemel Road
(Parish Hall)

San Antonio, Texas

Free Admission. Open to the Public.

Bring your family and friends! It's an event you won't want to miss.

- Listen to inspiring messages of hope and wonderful stories on the bond between people and pets

- Enjoy soothing and beautiful music in honor of our furry friends

- Meet award-winning Author and animal lover, Teri Wilson. Teri loves romance, dogs and wearing pink. Her stories are often filled with happy endings, splashes of humor and a lovable critter or two. After all, Cinderella never would have lived happily ever after without a little help from her animal friends! Teri is the recipient of the 2006 Westminster Kennel Club Angel on a Leash Writing Award and the 3rd place winner of the 21st Annual American Kennel Club Short Fiction Contest. She lives in San Antonio, Texas, with her husband, son and three delightful dogs. One of her many books is "All Creatures of Our God and King: What God's Word Says About Animals."

*Check out her Web site:

- Meet Tom and Sue Ann McGoldrick of Paws in Heaven, located in Sattler, TX. Tom and his wife, Sue Ann, have been serving the pet parent community for various years. The two animal lovers are dedicated to supporting the needs of pet parents who take their furry friends to their crematory - a final resting place. In Tom's own words:

"We love our pets. They are our family. We know what a devastating
loss it can be when your family pet passes on. At Paws in Heaven, we treat these situations with the dignity a family pet deserves and provide a complete service to families who wish to have closure and a sense of peace when their beloved pet is gone. More than a crematorium, Paws in Heaven is here to provide caring services during an emotionally difficult time. It is our privilege to do so." - Tom McGoldrick

Click here to view their Web site:

- Be part of a beautiful candlelight experience, paying tribute to ALL creatures great and small! (Candle provided)

- Receive a unique keepsake gift in honor of your wonderful fur friend

- Listen to one-of-a-kind poems written by local pet parents

- Meet Santa Paws and Mrs. Claws

- An opportunity to win two free movie tickets to see "Marley & Me," coming to a theatre near you on Christmas Day *Click here to Movie Trailer:

- Rainbow Bridge Memorial - Bring photos of your precious pet

The "Tribute to Tails" Candlelight Memorial was organized in 2003 by Jim and Julie Wiley of San Antonio.

Julie is a San Antonio native. Jim is originally from Muscatine, Iowa, but now calls San Antonio "Home Sweet Home." The couple both serve in the world of communications and love it! But their GREATEST passion is their love for animals. Jim and Julie love-love-love God's creatures - ALL of them - from the tiny little kitchen mouse to the enormous five ton African elephant. This couple absolutely LOVES animals. Julie also serves as a facilitator for the SAPPY Pet Loss & Grief Support Group of San Antonio. They attend Community Bible Church. Jim is a graduate of the University of Northern Iowa and Julie earned her degree from Southwest Texas State University. Julie also studied psychology during her studies at SWT. Her love for people and pets runs deep! She has also served as a small group counselor in various summer camp events. She and her husband organized the SAPPY Pet Loss & Grief Support Group in 2003, after they lost their 14-year-old Chihuahua, Sappy, to bladder cancer. Their mission is to work hard and passionately towards helping God's creatures find warm, loving homes and to help comfort the people who mourn after the loss of their precious and perfect creatures.

In Memory of "Sappy" 05/17/89 - 08/04/03


For more information, please call Julie at 210-216-0920 or e-mail at


Click here to Get directions to St. Francis Episcopal Church


October 9, 2008

Speaker to deliver important message about the pets in our lives

6th Annual Tribute to Tails Candlelight Memorial
(Parish Hall)
December 13, 2008
6:30 p.m.
St. Francis Episcopal Church, San Antonio, TX 78240

The Rev. Dr. C. Patrick Ormos, Rector, St. Francis Episcopal Church, San Antonio, Texas

The Rev. Patrick has been involved with dogs since the mid-1960's.

He bred his first litter and finished his first champion, a German Shepherd, in 1968. Since then, he's been involved with a "world of dogs" on an international level, his dogs have been shown in Canada, the USA, the UK and in Europe.

With his dog partner, Cathy Ochs-Cline of VA, the Rev. Ormos has bred more than 100 champion, mostly Cardigan Welsh Corgis. He also judges dogs internationally and has lectured extensively on canine genetics and breeding. The Rev. Ormos has always had a pet cat as well, since his teen-aged years, and his younger brother used to keep a pet rabbit. His sisters each have companion animals ranging from cats to horses too. So, he knows well the importance our animal companions are to our families.

If you would like additional information about "Tribute to Tails," please call 210-216-0920, or email

Click here to Get directions.

If you would like more information about St. Francis Episcopal Church in San Antonio, please visit Web site at, or call 210-6960834.

October 8, 2008

SAVE THE DATE: Dec. 13, 2008 - 6th Annual Tribute to Tails

6th Annual Tribute to Tails: Dec. 13, 2008, 6:30 p.m., St. Francis Episcopal Church, 4242 Bluemel Rd., San Antonio, TX. - FREE TO THE COMMUNITY -

Click here to Get directions

September 30, 2008


6th Annual Tribute to Tails Candlelight Memorial - Keep your pencil and calendar close-by!

A special event honoring our beloved furry four-legged friends.

December 13, 2008, 6:30 p.m., St. Francis Episcopal Church, San Antonio, TX
(210) 216-0920.

Come experience a VERY unique and inspiring event, including:

-Beautiful inspirational music

-Mighty messages of hope

-A fascinating candlelight memorial

-A blessing of the animals

-A special visit from Santa Paws and Mrs. Claws

Free to the community

Brought to you by the SAPPY Pet Loss & Grief Support Group of San Antonio (Since 2003) For more information about this year's Tribute to Tails, please contact Julie at (210) 216-0920, or e-mail to:

A Dog's Purpose

A story written by a veterinarian: Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolf hound named Belker.The dog's owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.

I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn't do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home. As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure.

They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker's family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.

The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker's Death, wondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, 'I know why.'Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me.

I'd never heard a more comforting explanation.He said, 'People are born so that they can learn how to live a good Life -- like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?' The Six-year-old continued, 'Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long.

Live simply.
Love generously.
Care deeply.
Speak kindly.

Remember, if a dog was the teacher you would learn things like: When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride.

Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure Ecstasy.

Take naps.
Stretch before rising.
Run, romp, and play daily.
Thrive on attention and let people touch you.
Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.
On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass.
On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree.
When you're happy, dance around and wag your entire body.
Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.Be loyal.Never pretend to be something you're not.

If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it. When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by, and nuzzle them gently.


August 3, 2008

In Memory of Our Sappy

We Love you, SAPPY
I can't believe it's been five years since our precious Sappy went to Heaven. Sappy, our white longhaired 14-year-old Chihuahua, took his last breath on earth on Monday, August 4, 2003, at 12:20 p.m. I can still remember holding his beautiful little head in my hands, with my voice whispering, "I love you," into his small furry ears. He seemed very comfortable knowing I was right next to him, where he always felt the safest.

Tears rolled down my face, as he left this earth. I could almost see God's angels carrying him in their arms to Heaven. We know without a doubt, our little furry boy went to Heaven. I tried to be strong, but deep inside, I was breaking into a million pieces. He was no longer here on earth. His tiny body layed lifeless, but I know his little soul and spirit are very much alive in the City of God.

I can see him with my faith - he's running through God's wonderful streams of crystal blue and green water and standing tall on the Lord's beautiful pastures. He's playing in God's gardens and resting in soft green grass, next to other dogs and cats, including:

Frieda, Rosie, Delight, Starbuck, Max, Megan, Muffin, Abby, Scoobey, Curly, Roscoe, Gracie, Barney, Mickey, Lady, Ninja, Samson, Charlie, Chance, Mickey, Minnie, Junior, Lulu, Pink, Freddy, Pops, Coco, Furball, Tori, Kit Kat, Maggie, Aspen, Cheetah, Sparkle, Moxie, Ranger, Rockie, Pranser, Sebastian, Pookie, Jasper, Devin, Friday, Daisy Mae, Ralph, Pugoet, Cashew, Sayrah, Angus, Tess, Grace, Little, Cassie, Jasmin, Mia, Nala, Megan, Bruce, Bitsy, Lucy, Buckie, Teegie, Sadie, Buddy, Sparky, Bear, Shadow, Punky, Nikki, Will, Shotz, AC, Bucki, Mandi, Rick, Kati, Chloe, Benito, Fluffy, Marcus, Lucky, Blackie, Bandit, Sugar, Cheddar, Boo Boo, Dilan, Sratch, Fries, Jake, Jodie, Abbie, Apollo, Toni, Kipli, Chula, Petey, Ricky, Chili, Rebel, The Beagle, Madeleine, JoJo, Angel, Henry, Teddy, Oliver, Missy Lou, Celeste, and many, many, many others...

Seconds after our Sappy was gone to Rainbow Bridge (Heaven), we walked out of the veterinarian's clinic, leaving our boy's little body in the hands of our veterinarian friend. We had Sappy cremated by wonderful people whom we trust with all of our hearts.

I felt so empty, alone and extremely numb (shocked). That day really did happen. Reality hit me like a ton of bricks. Everything on earth has an ending. Sooner or later, we will all have to leave this earth. But there's always hope! Hope tells us that through a relationship with Jesus Christ, we will see our pets again. Hope tells us that someday, in God's own timing, we will be reunited with those who've died in Christ. Hope tells us that, all things are possible. And, that should give us the strength to carry on each new day without our precious four-legged furry friends, like our Sappy.

Our hope is in Christ, alone. We know without a doubt that we shall see Sappy again! And, that gives us great peace and puts a BIG smile on our faces! Sappy left this earth, but never has he left our hearts. He lives deep within our hearts every day and every minute of our lives.

Thank you, God and thank you, Sappy, for touching our lives and for changing our hearts to see the beauty in all living creatures - great and small.We miss you and we will see you at the gates of Heaven on that glorious day.

Dad & Mom (Jim & Julie Wiley)August 4, 2008 - 5 Year Anniversary - Sappy in Heaven

Please click here to listen to song paying tribute to our Sappy boy:

July 21, 2008

Buddy finds a home

Two Paws Up to Rescue Team

Buddy finally found the home he always dreamed of. He often dreamed of a time when he would sleep in a warm bed, eat good food and be protected from dangerous diseases by getting vaccinated. His dream came true through Marissa and Derrick; and through the assistance of Frank and Maureen.

It all happened when Marissa, Julie and Christin, were driving and running errands one weekend. They spotted Buddy tied to a fence - no tags and no one around. The three ladies passed him by and wondered if maybe he belong to someone, so they went their way. After several hours, they drove by again to see if Buddy was still there. He was.

So, they hopped out of their car and discovered that he was indeed abandoned. They untied him from the link chained fence where he was poorly tied. His collar was broken and he was unbelievably matted. Poor boy! This was no doubt a VERY cruel act by some selfish human. We took him home, bathed him and fed him.

Marissa and Derrick adopted him and Frank and Maureen funded his vaccines and neuter surgery. Today, he's the HAPPIEST dog on the face of this earth. He's a success story and a prayer answered. His dream came true! He loves to play catch and loves kissing his mommy and daddy. He is one blessed pooch.

Thank you, Marissa, Derrick, Frank and Maureen for Stepping Up! Two paws up to YOU! You made one four-legged furry friend's life much better. God bless you for reaching out to him.

In Memory of Max - July 24, 2002


My boy,my powerful boy.
You were born an original and died that way.

Long days have passed since you have been gone.

I know you are with me and
when my time comes I pray
you will be one of the first to
to greet me...

We who choose to surround
ourselves with lives even more
temporary than our own,live within a fragile circle...

Love, your mommy, Boni.
In Memory of Max
July 24, 2002 (Gone to Rainbow Bridge)

February 16, 2008

SAPPY Pet Loss & Grief Support Group Schedule 2008

The SAPPY Pet Loss & Grief Support Group of San Antonio (Since 2003) gathers every 4th Tuesday of the Month, from 6:30 - 8 p.m. at The English Tea Shoppe, 6877 Bandera Road, San Antonio, Texas. Participants are invited to bring poems, stories and photographs of their beloved pets for a time of sharing, only if they're ready. No one is pressured to share, unless they choose to. Each person is unique and deal with grief differently. There is no timetable to grief. Grief can last from six months to several years. No one should feel ashamed to grieve when a pet dies. It's perfectly normal to go through a season of grief because for many of us, our pets aren't just pets, they are part of the family - YOUR family! And, they will always be part of your life, because they will live-on within your heart, forever!

Our Schedule:

- January 22

- February 26

- March 25

- April 22

- May 27

- June 24

- July 22

- August 26

- September 22

-October 28

- November 25

- December 23

6th Annual Tribute to Tails Memorial (Date/Location to be Announced)

Sponsored by the SAPPY Pet Loss & Grief Support Group of SA

For more information about our group, please call (210) 216-0920 or email to