Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018 The Official Newspaper of the Diocese of Greensburg Volume 57, No. 19 Bishop Malesic statement on school shooting As I heard about Wednesday’s horrific school shooting in Flor-ida, I struggled to find the words to convey my sorrow and deep compassion for the victims and their families and my deep frus-tration with yet another senseless act of violence, especially one tar-geting our young people. I want to start by sharing the statement from Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput, who was present with the families who lost loved ones in the Columbine massacre nearly two decades ago. MARY SEAMANS THE CATHOLIC ACCENT “Nineteen years ago I sat with the parents of children murdered in the Columbine High School massacre, and buried some of their dead. Nothing seems to change, no matter how brutal the cost. Terrible things happen; pious statements are released, and the nation goes back to its self-absorbed distractions. “The latest massacre in south Florida requires two things from all of us. We need to pray for the victims and their families be-cause — as I witnessed firsthand at Columbine — their suffering is intense and long lasting. “And we need to be angry: angry at our lawmakers for doing so little to prevent these catastrophes; angry at our news and entertainment media for simultaneously feeding off these tragedies and fueling them with a steady stream of sensation-alism and moral incoherence; angry at ourselves for perversely tolerating these things, and then forgetting them until the next round of violence. “This is Lent. As a people, we Continued on page 10 LENT IS UPON US: Msgr. Raymond E. Riffle, rector of Blessed Sacrament Cathedral Parish, Greensburg, places ashes on the head of a woman during the Ash Wednesday Mass Feb. 14 at the cathedral. For more on Lent, see pages 6 and 7. For five years, Francis’ focus on outreach By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service VATICAN CITY — Five years ago, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio was elected pope just a few days after telling the College of Cardinals that the Catholic Church faced a clear choice between being a church that “goes out” or a church focused on its internal affairs. After the cardinal from Buenos Aires, Argentina, was elected March 13, 2013, and chose the name Francis, he made “go out,” “periphery” and “throwaway culture” standard phrases in the papal vocabulary. Catholics have a wide variety of opinions about how Pope Francis is exercising the papal ministry, and many of his comments — both in informal news conferences and in formal documents — have stirred con-troversy. But as he wrote in “Evangelii Gaudium,” the apostolic exhortation laying out the vision for his pontificate: Pope Francis has worked to set the Catholic Church on a new course, which first of all involves evangelization. “I prefer a church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security.” But there are two areas of internal church affairs that he recognized needed immediate attention: the reform of the Roman Curia and the full protection of children and vulnerable adults from clerical sexual abuse. The organizational reform of the Curia has been taking place in stages, but Pope Francis has insisted that the real reform is a matter of changing hearts and embracing service. On the issue of abuse, nine months into his pontificate, Pope Francis established the Pontifical Commission for Child Protection to advise him on better ways to prevent clerical sexual abuse and to ensure pastoral care for the survivors. Pope Francis has worked to set the Catholic Church on a new course, which first of all involves evangelization. “Evangelizing presupposes a desire in the church to come out of herself,” he had told the cardinals just days before the conclave that elected him. “The church is called to come out of herself and to go to the peripheries, not only geographically, but also the existential peripheries: the mystery of sin, of pain, of injustice, of ignorance and indifference to religion, of intellec-tual currents and of all misery.” Mercy is the first thing the Catho-lic Church is called to bring to those peripheries, he says. Although in 2013 he told reporters he would not be traveling as much as Continued on page 16 INSIDE THIS ISSUE People come into the church through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. PAG E 4 PAGES 8-9 The 2018 Diocesan Lenten Appeal kicks off in the Diocese of Greensburg.