Beloved Stray Cat Given Memorial Service at Church She Called Home for 12 Years

Pets have a way of quickly becoming part of our families. The loss of a beloved cat or dog is devastating, and a memorial offers a way to honor what they meant to us. The Southwark Cathedral knows this all too well, as the London-based church recently held a service to memorialize its beloved furry congregant named Doorkins Magnificat.

The stray feline lived in the cathedral for 12 years (arriving in 2008) and died on September 30, 2020. In a touching obituary written by the Very Reverend Andrew Nunn, Dean of Southwark, he describes the beginnings of when Doorkins came to reside in the church. “From those first tentative steps into the building she made the church her own,” he wrote. “She preferred the holy spaces and every so often she would move to another place which became her favorite spot.” And like many cats, important visitors—even the Queen of England—weren’t enough to stir her from slumber in a cozy place.

During her years spent at the church, Doorkins was a warm presence for congregants, new and returning alike. But in 2017, her health began to take a turn for the worse. Kidney problems, hearing loss, and blindness all befell her, and she eventually went to live with Paul Timms, the head verger, at his home. She suffered a stroke at the end of September and died in his arms.

To commemorate the beloved feline, Southwark held a memorial service under its Gothic arches and then laid Doorkins to rest in the churchyard. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, only 30 people were allowed to attend the ceremony, but it was simultaneously live streamed and is now available to watch on YouTube. Since being held on October 28, 2020, there have been nearly 20,000 views of the service.

The Southwark Cathedral recently held a memorial for their beloved furry congregant named Doorkins Magnificat.

Doorkins lived in the church for 12 years.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, only 30 people could attend the cat memorial service, but the church live streamed the event. Watch it below:

Southwark Cathedral: Website | Facebook  

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by Southwark Cathedral. 

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Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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