March 24, 2023

Most Reverend Nelson J. Pérez to Celebrate Annual Mass for Persons with Disabilities and the Deaf Community

Most Reverend Nelson J. Pérez, Archbishop of Philadelphia, will be the principal celebrant and homilist at the annual Archdiocesan Mass for Persons with Disabilities. The Mass will be offered for the intention of persons with disabilities, the deaf community, their families, friends, and caregivers.

Sunday, March 26, 2023
3:00 p.m.
Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul
18th Street & Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia, PA 19103

At the conclusion of Mass, the One Body in Christ Award will be presented to an individual for exemplifying the spirt of a Missionary Disciple by valuing the dignity of all people.  The Philadelphia Catholic Mass Gospel Choir, led by Ms. Tonya Taylor-Dorsey, will provide the liturgical music. Immediately following, a reception will be held in the auditorium of the Archdiocesan Pastoral Center.

Imago Dei, an exhibition of portraits by Philly artist Rebecca Giles, will be on display in the lobby of the Archdiocesan Pastoral Center Lobby. This exhibition was inspired by the artist’s Catholic faith and experiences as a person with a disability. Imago Dei refers to the belief that every human being is created with immense and inherent value “in the image and likeness of God.” The Imago Dei exhibition places portraits of people who have disabilities, who are image-bearers of God, alongside paintings of Jesus and his mother Mary. Most of the artwork is available for sale. Print reproductions are available as well. 

All are welcome to attend the Mass and art exhibition that is sponsored by the Archdiocesan Office for Persons with Disabilities and the Deaf Apostolate. Guests are asked to arrive by 2:45 p.m. for the Mass.  Accessible on-site parking is available, and the reception and art exhibit will follow the Mass.

All people of goodwill are invited to attend in-person or virtually. Thanks to the generous support of the Catholic Foundation of Greater Philadelphia, theMass will be streamed live via the Archdiocesan Vimeo Channel and Archbishop Pérez’s Facebook page ( beginning at 3:00 p.m.

# # #

Editor’s Note:

About the Archdiocesan Office for Persons with Disabilities and the Deaf Apostolate
The Office for Persons with Disabilities and the Deaf Apostolate fosters the full inclusion of people with disabilities into the life of the Church and serves as a pastoral resource for parishes and individuals in providing access and welcome to persons with disabilities. The Deaf Apostolate provides Masses and Sacraments in American Sign Language, pastoral care and religious education to the Catholic community who are Deaf/Hard of Hearing. Please visit

About Catholic Social Services’ Developmental Programs

The Developmental Programs Division of Catholic Social Services offers persons with intellectual disabilities a continuum of care designed to enhance their quality of life by promoting individuality, empowering personal choice, promoting dignity and respect, and nourishing a family spirit rooted in Christian faith and values. The division manages residential and community-based programs for adults and children who have intellectual disabilities or are developmentally delayed. Please visit

About the Archdiocesan Schools of Special Education

The mission of the Archdiocesan Schools for Special Education is to facilitate the complete development of students with physical and intellectual disabilities to their fullest potential: spiritually, intellectually, vocationally, physically and emotionally. Please visit

About the Rising Together Alliance
The mission of the Rising Together Alliance, is to provide children with intellectual disabilities the opportunity for an inclusive Catholic education in their local parochial schools.  We welcome all children to an inclusive Catholic education by working together with the Office of Catholic Education to increase the capabilities of the parochial schools within the Archdiocese to provide meaningful and effective inclusion. Please visit

facebook Archdiocese of Philadelphia
twitter ArchPhilly
instagram ArchPhilly

Alaina Longo
Media and Events Specialist 
215-587-3747 (office)