Cat-astrophe Averted: Vatican Firefighters Rescue Furry Feline Stuck on Colonnade Surrounding St. Peter’s Square

It is not currently known who the cat belongs to or how it was able to ascend the colonnade, which consists of 284 43-foot-tall columns.

A cat is stranded in the colonnade surrounding St. Peter’s Square.
A cat is stranded in the colonnade surrounding St. Peter’s Square. (photo: Hannah Brockhaus / CNA/EWTN)

VATICAN CITY — Vatican firefighters successfully rescued a cat on Tuesday after it became stuck on top of the colonnade surrounding St. Peter’s Square.

Several times during the late morning on Feb. 15 the firemen ascended to the top of the portico on their fire truck ladder in an attempt to grab the orange cat from the corner where it was perching.

Just outside the colonnade of St. Peter's — Vatican firefighters initiate a rescue operation for a stuck cat. pic.twitter.com/yAs7ewzHO0

— Hannah Brockhaus (@HannahBrockhaus) February 15, 2022

Several attempts were unsuccessful, as the furry creature narrowly skittered past the firefighter’s arms and around the edge of the architectural masterpiece designed by 17th-century sculptor Gian Lorenzo Bernini.

It is not currently known who the cat belongs to or how it was able to ascend the colonnade, which consists of 284 43-foot-tall columns.

 The firefighters appeared to take some time to regroup after the cat moved to a new position, hiding behind loudspeakers as a rain shower passed over.

 An eyewitness told CNA less than an hour later that the cat had evaded firefighters once again before leaping unharmed down to the ground, where Vatican safety personnel were able to scoop it up safely.

It isn’t clear where the cat would go next, but bystanders speculated that it would be given to a family to take care of.

A woman who identified herself as Silvia, who works at a nearby religious goods and souvenir shop, had a front row seat to the rescue.

 “They took the cat and cleaned it, and now they have taken it away in a car,” she told CNA.

“Maybe they will give it to a family that needs affection, because, anyway, pets bring a lot of affection and love.”

The Vatican is home to a famous cat lover: Pope emeritus Benedict XVI. When he worked in the Roman Curia before his election as pope, he would reportedly prepare plates of food for stray cats. It was said that if friendly cats near his Vatican offices were hurt, he would bandage their wounds.

Nicaraguan police place Bishop Rolando José Álvarez under house arrest Aug. 4 at the diocesan chancery in Matagalpa, Nicaragua.

Nicaragua Needs More

EDITORIAL: Although the Vatican has offered a muted response, Pope Francis must do more to condemn human-rights abuses in Nicaragua before the Ortega regime exploits papal silence to justify its immoral actions.