Sunday, April 16, 2017 - Updated: 12:01 am
April 14, 2017
My dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ:
When I was a little kid, I went to Mass with my mom and dad every Sunday. Until I was old enough to become an altar server, as I sat in the pew with my parents, I took notice of the sights, smells and sounds of being in Church: sights like statues and stained-glass windows; smells like incense and lighted candles; sounds like the choir and babies crying.
One of the things I looked forward to hearing at the Easter Vigil was the sound of the bells. Whenever the “Gloria in Excelsis Deo” — the “Glory to God in the Highest” — was intoned, every bell in church began to ring, the organ blared an excitement that seemed uncontained, and people in our parish couldn’t wait to say the traditional Polish Easter greeting: “Wesolego, Alleluia!” “He is risen, truly risen, Alleluia, Alleluia!”
At its very core, Easter is the risen Savior, the risen Jesus. This is neither myth nor misunderstanding. It is as real as Jesus standing in front of Mary Magdalene or Peter or John or the disciples on the road to Emmaus.
Like them, we are meant to be Easter people — joyous, confident, prayerful, hopeful and loving. That’s what it means to be Easter people. It is how the world should know us. It is what makes us most assuredly The Church Alive!
It is the faith we express not just on Easter Sunday, but every day of our lives. We bring that faith to our family and friends, to our neighbors and co-workers, to our whole world. He has risen, and in him and through him we have the promise of life forever.
Together with Bishop Waltersheid and Bishop Winter, I pray that you have a wonderful and beautiful Easter. Make this Easter season a true celebration and recognition that we are, together, “Easter people!” Our mission is to take that glorious faith to the world! Because that’s what it means to be On Mission for The Church Alive!
Grateful that Jesus is truly risen as he promised, and grateful for our belief that “Nothing is Impossible with God,” I am
Your brother in Christ,
Most Reverend David A. Zubik
Bishop of Pittsburgh