Top stories of the week: New senior apartments, church closing, Catholic schools merging –

NEW BEDFORD — Another week has gone by, and COVID is still on our minds.

The heated debate on wearing a mask to help stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus made its way to the City Council at its recent meeting. 

Linda Morad and Naomi Carney, councilors-at-large, faced off last week during the council’s meeting when Morad attempted to extend to April 1 the council’s ability to meet remotely should they not be able to meet in person. 

Carney said she would only favor meeting remotely “only as a last resort.” Taking into consideration the fast-moving omicron variant of the virus, she said the symptoms are similar to a cold.  “Councilor, I cannot believe you made that speech,” Morad stated. “This isn’t a joke. It’s not a cold.”

Of course, there were other issues on readers’ minds, and we bring you a summary of the top news stories in the New Bedford area last week.

New senior housing 

Construction of a 27-unit apartment building at the Temple Landing housing development was recently given the green light from the Zoning Board of Appeals.  

The project is one of the first so-called Chapter 40B housing petitions in the city in over a decade. 

The building will be four stories high and situated at the corner of Middle and Ash streets, adjacent to the Temple Landing community building. 

Cory Fellows, of Preservation of Affordable Housing (POAH), a non-profit organization based in Boston, told members of the ZBA at recent hearings that the new apartments would be for senior citizens.  

Housing boost: New apartment building at New Bedford’s Temple Landing will have 27 units for seniors

New clothing shop, Los Perros

From consignment clothing to garment printing, Los Perros on Acushnet Avenue offers help to bring anyone’s idea to life at a fraction of the price.

“This is my way of giving back because I know how it feels to get something screen printed and be so much money,” said Kashif Amar, 35, co-owner of the retail, printing and consignment store.

Los Perros: Clothing brand artist returns to New Bedford to help youth bring ideas to life in his shop

Another church closing

Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church on North Front Street, the first Roman Catholic Polish Church in New Bedford, will be closing at the end of the month. 

“The decision to close is based primarily on diminishing participation at Mass and within the parish’s spiritual ministries,” said John Kearns, spokesperson for the Diocese of Fall River.  

“At a recent Saturday Mass there were less than 20 in attendance and less than 30 on Sunday,” Kearns said. 

Kearns noted the church has been ministered by priests of the Franciscan Order of Friars Minor Conventual.  

The most recent pastor, the Rev. Conrad Salach, died unexpectedly in October, and the Franciscans were not able to replace him, so a retired priest of the Fall River Diocese has been filling in until the church closes on Jan. 30, Kearns said. 

Diocese makes painful decision: Another Catholic church in New Bedford closing. This time it’s Our Lady of Perpetual Help

Catholic schools merging

Students of Holy Family Holy Name School on Summer Street will be going to another school next year when their building is shuttered at the end of this academic year. 

Bishop Edgar M. da Cunha made the announcement that Holy Family Holy Name will be merging with St. James St. John School in a video produced for the Catholic Schools Alliance website.  

St. James St. John on Orchard Street will also be getting a new name because of the merger, Bishop da Cunha said. He said he would make a final decision on its name once students and families offer input on naming the new school. 

More diocese news: Two New Bedford Catholic are schools merging in 2022. What we know about the plan.

Don’t forget to vote for your favorite local athletes

Our most-read stories of the week this week were our two sports polls, one for the high school player of the week, and the other for the basketball player of the week.

The polls are a great way to highlight some of the top performances in high school sports.