On 7th June 1981 the Archbishop of Bari Mons. Mariano Magrassi erected the Diocesan Museum in Bari. The intent was inspired by the dictates of the II Vatican Ecumenical Council, in order to avoid "the sacred furnishings and works that are precious ornaments from the house of God, being sold or dispersed." Initially, it served as a storage space for works of art and sacred furnishings from churches in a state of abandon from the ancient city of Bari and the entire diocese. The Museum was officially opened on 16th June 1983. On 12th September 1996 the first exhibition of the Treasury hall, the Exultet hall and the art gallery was created. On 11th September 1998, the establishment of the lapidary of the Hall of Blessing, Exultet II and III and the hall of the church vestments was inaugurated on the second plot. After the displacement of the Curia offices by Archbishop Francis Cacucci, the remaining area of the first floor was designed as a museum.