New ministry at the former St. Joachim

Bishop John J. McIntyre blesses a crucifix at the Cenacle at the Padro Pio Prayer Center.
Bishop John J. McIntyre blesses one of the entrances to the Cenacle at the Padro Pio Prayer Center.

Everybody was given a commemorative T-shirt.

Bishop John J. McIntyre on Monday blessed and dedicated a new outreach ministry, The Cenacle at The Padre Pio Prayer Center, at the former St. Joachim Parish, 1527 Church St. in Frankford.

The ministry is a joint initiative of Catholic Social Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and the Pro-Life Union of Greater Philadelphia.

The center focuses on ministering to pregnant women, new parents and families. Services at The Cenacle at The Padre Pio Prayer Center include pregnancy and parenting education, food and diaper pantries, health literacy, educational workshops and a laundry room.

Monday’s event featured prayer, music and a luncheon. Among those in attendance was the Rev. Bob Bazzoli, a former St. Joachim pastor.

St. Joachim Parish merged with Holy Innocents in 2013 and was acquired by the Capuchin Franciscan Friars of the Province of Saint Augustine. The Rev. Tom Higgins, pastor at Holy Innocents, was on hand for Monday’s celebration.

“This is a great gift,” Higgins said of the Cenacle. ••