Post-Gazette: Bishop Zubik urges Catholics to Reach out to others

April 17, 2014

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
By Peter Smith

While Good Friday and Easter are expected to draw some of the biggest crowds of the year to churches this weekend, Pittsburgh Bishop David Zubik is calling on all Catholics to invite and welcome people the rest of the year.

Bishop Zubik is issuing an Easter pastoral letter calling on lay Catholics to be evangelists, reaching the people that priests and even a popular pope cannot in an era of declining participation in Catholic sacraments and in attendance at churches of any sort.

“Be a friend. Be a friend of Jesus. Make friends for Jesus,” Bishop Zubik wrote in the 42-page document, titled, “The Church Evangelizing: A Pastoral Letter to the Church of Pittsburgh on Sharing the Good News of God’s Love.”

Bishop Zubik acknowledged that for many Catholics, the term “evangelism” is still relatively unfamiliar, although the past three popes have promoted the concept of a “new evangelization” to reach Catholics who have drifted or become estranged from their cradle faith.

Bishop Zubik said his childhood image of an evangelist was the Protestant Billy Graham — which, he said, is a good example of inspiring others to follow Jesus.
“Not unlike Billy Graham, we all, you and I, are called to be evangelists,” Bishop Zubik wrote.

This is the fourth pastoral letter of Bishop Zubik’s tenure in Pittsburgh. It is being distributed in this week’s edition of the Pittsburgh Catholic newspaper and being heavily promoted through social media.

Read the full article here.