BRINDISI, Italy -

A loyal dog is capturing the hearts of the world.

The animal attends mass every day at a church in Italy where its owner's funeral was held.

People who attend the church in southern Italy say the German shepherd, named Tommy, was rescued by 57-year-old Maria Margherita.

Tommy would walk to church with Margherita every day until her death in November.

Since then, the devoted German shepherd has been adopted by the community.

Residents say Tommy runs to mass when the church bells ring.

"He's still coming to mass even after Maria's funeral," explained Father Donato Panna."He waits patiently by the side of the altar and just sits there quietly."