Tuesday was an incredible and inspiring day as the Cathedral hosted the relics of St. Pio of Pietrelcina (Padre Pio). The Cathedral was jam packed for the 12:05 pm Mass celebrated by Bishop Zubik and the lines of people coming to venerate the relics stretched down the aisle, out the center door, along Fifth Avenue and up Craig Street all afternoon and evening. I have never witnessed anything quite like it in my time as pastor of the Cathedral. It was a beautiful and touching sight to see so many people coming to offer their prayers and intentions, and seeking blessing through the intercession of this saint, canonized by St. Pope John Paul II in 2002. There was deep and sincere faith among the pilgrims, a joy of being able to draw close to a man who had suffered greatly but manifested the tenderness and mercy of God in every dimension of his life. Padre Pio was a holy man of God, given the stigmata, and he had miraculous powers of healing and knowledge, spending hours of time in the confessional dispensing the mercy and love of God to penitents seeking grace. Padre Pio’s father actually emigrated to New Castle, PA in the face of serious economic crisis in Italy so he could provide for his family. Padre Pio is a source of inspiration to so many. His own sufferings led him to be an instrument of compassion and mercy to so many. Venerating his relics will bring great grace and strength to those who came in humility and prayer but will also be a source of grace to our entire Cathedral parish family. We take to heart his words: “Pray, Hope and Don’t Worry,” have trust and faith in God’s love. St. Padre Pio pray for us.
Click on the following link to listen to Bishop Zubik’s Homily from the Mass in Honor of Padre Pio recorded on Tuesday, May 9, 2017, as well as Fr. Kris Stubna’s Homily from May 11th, 2017: https://dioceseofpittsburgh.sharefile.com/share?#/view/8743375c596741c4