By Andy Sheehan

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Just yesterday Bishop David Zubik led a procession down the center aisle of St. Paul Cathedral and ordained five new priests.

But early Monday morning, he was in an operating room at UPMC Mercy Hospital — undergoing his third major back surgery in past seven years. This time, to repair damaged discs.

Father Ron Lengwin emerged from the hospital Monday afternoon saying all went well.

“We’re very pleased that the operation was success,” he said. “I saw him about ten minutes ago, and he’s resting comfortably and hopes to back home soon.”

His back has been a nagging problem for the bishop, who underwent surgeries in 2010 and 2011. One surgery was on a bulging disc in his lower back, and the other was to relieve pressure on his spinal cord.

The hope here is that this third procedure will relieve his pain and allow him to maintain his very active schedule and ministry.

“You go into surgery with that hope that you’re going to be better for having gone through the pain and we think that’s the situation here,” Lengwin said. “We have reason to look to the future with hope.”

And coming out of surgery, Father Lengwin said the bishop was deeply grateful for all the support he’s received.

“He said everything has turned out so well and he’s sure that the prayers from the people across the diocese were part of it all,” Lengwin said.

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