The man who founded the Cyrenians in Huddersfield to help homeless people, also found time to help families.
Twice a week, month after month, for many years, he collected food donated by Marks and Spencer and Tesco stores to distribute to needy people in Huddersfield.
And every year he organised fun-filled trips to the Camelot theme park for the young children who lived on the town's sprawling council estates.
Mr Henkel, who was 86, died last week in Knowl Park House care home in Mirfield.
His funeral service took place yesterday at St James's RC Church in Oakes - one of the two churches at which he worshipped, the other being Oakes Baptist Church.
His widow, Mrs Shirley Henkel, who was married to him for 51 years, said: "He was a man who lived two lifetimes in one."
Jack Henkel and his twin sister Mary were born in Smethwick, Birmingham, but at the age of six weeks he was fostered to a family in Rochdale.
At the age of 12 he was sent to Germany and went to school in Koblenz.
With war looming, Mr Henkel moved to Switzerland to continue his studies.
He studied Greek, languages and theology, but after enrolling at a seminary, he decided the priesthood was not for him.
He returned to England and to Huddersfield, where his sister was living.
There he met Shirley and the pair married at St Joseph's RC Church, Almondbury.
Their wedding was the first at the church, consecrated as a Catholic church only the day before.
It was on a visit to a vocations exhibition at Leeds that the couple were touched by the plight of the homeless and, on their return to Huddersfield, Mr Henkel approached priest Father Gus Little with the idea of helping them.
The Cyrenians were launched in Huddersfield in 1971 and for the next 21 years, until he suffered a heart attack, Mr Henkel devoted his life to the project.
He and his wife ran soup kitchens, set up a night shelter in the cellar of The Plaza at Longroyd Bridge, and finally opened a residents' refuge in Portland Street, Huddersfield.
Mrs Henkel said: "He found it so wonderful. To Jack, the work was always extremely rewarding."
He leaves his wife, their four children - Stephen, Anna, Christine and Michael Ben - and his three grandchildren, Phillip, Aimi and Leigh.