ShareThis Page
North Hills

Franklin Park fitness ministry marks first year of operation

| Wednesday, May 3, 2017, 9:00 p.m.
Judy Venditto gets in some work on one of the many exercise machines available.
Submitted
Judy Venditto gets in some work on one of the many exercise machines available.
Wendy Cibula and Carolyn Briggs at the end of the PraiseMoves exercise class enjoying a hot lavender compress.
Submitted
Wendy Cibula and Carolyn Briggs at the end of the PraiseMoves exercise class enjoying a hot lavender compress.
Body & Soul Wellness at Heritage Presbyterian Church continues to grow.
Submitted
Body & Soul Wellness at Heritage Presbyterian Church continues to grow.
Body & Soul Wellness at Heritage Presbyterian Church continues to grow.
Body & Soul Wellness at Heritage Presbyterian Church continues to grow.
Franklin Park Police Officer Jason Venturella works with Grace Cibula, a junior at North Allegheny High School.
Submitted
Franklin Park Police Officer Jason Venturella works with Grace Cibula, a junior at North Allegheny High School.

A Franklin Park fitness ministry is reaching out in its second year.

Body & Soul Wellness at Heritage Presbyterian Church plans to link up with other groups, including one that helps single mothers.

“We've offered these single moms (a) special workout night, a little self-care while we watch their children,” Body & Soul team leader Wendy Cibula said.

Such a program would have been inconceivable a year ago.

“The first year, we were just trying to figure out what we were doing and to be supportive to the ladies who found their way to our doors,” Cibula said.

Body and Soul started in an unused wing of the church in March 2016. Women of all ages and denominations are invited to join. Members pay monthly dues and guest passes are available.

No one is turned away.

Members can sign up for classes taught by certified instructors, or work out on their own on exercise equipment six days a week. About 80 people belong.

Cibula said staff members Susan Hall and Susan Payne and lead volunteer Anne Mallampalli come up with ideas, including a machine-of-the-week event that highlights the benefits of one piece of equipment.

“It simply has been amazing to see the ways God is working through this ministry,” said the Rev. Brian Janssen, church pastor. “People are being opened up to new relationships with one another and the community.

“It is truly a blessing to us and our surroundings.”

Betty Perry, 71, of Franklin Park enjoys PraiseMoves classes, a Christian alternative to yoga.

“Who stops in the middle of the week to honor God and offer our bodies to him?” she asked.

Judy Venditto, of McCandless, said the ministry has been a godsend after she moved back home to take care of her elderly mother. Not only has she dropped inches, she said she has made friends.

“It's a kindness from a group of people I haven't seen for awhile,” she said.

The ministry celebrates its one-year anniversary this month.

Events, mostly free, will include a wellness discussion and demonstration by TV personality Jennifer Antkowiak and a self-defense class taught by Franklin Park police officer Jason Venturella.

For details, call the ministry at 412-366-1356 or visit hpcbodyandsoul@gmail.com.

Karen Kadilak is a Tribune-Review contributor.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me