Mass was led by a man who grew up in the local church.By Ross Guidotti

GREENSBURG, Pa. (KDKA) — The Diocese of Greensburg marked the 70th anniversary of its formation on Wednesday.

The diocese held a special Mass at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral in Greensburg to commemorate the event. The services focused on the diocese, past and future, and how it was originally led by a Lamb.

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(Photo Credit: KDKA)

Seventy years ago, Pope Pius made a brand-new diocese from the then-massive Catholic population of western Pennsylvania.

“Armstrong, Indiana, Westmoreland, and Fayette, which had previously been part of the Diocese of Pittsburgh,” said Bishop Larry Kulick.

Wednesday’s special Mass was led by a man who grew up in the local church.

“It’s a moment of great reflection having been born and raised in the diocese,” said Bishop Kulick, who is a native of Leechburg. “It really is a wonderful day for the Diocese of Greensburg and the people of the diocese.”

The early parishes were the bedrock of the large ethnic communities that poured into the area from Eastern Europe in the Industrial Age. The first shepherd of the diocese was Bishop Hugh Lamb, and his seven-decade successor carried on Lamb’s role and carried something else.

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“The crozier, or the pastoral staff, of the first bishop of the Diocese of Greensburg. He was handed that pastoral staff at his installation almost 70 years ago,” said Kulick.

Those attending the anniversary Mass considered themselves fortunate faithful.

“I’m on the church council,” said Deborah Rago of New Kensington. “I try to help out with everything I can at church. I love it there.”

For Antoinette Myers, a 40-year member of the diocese, it was where she found peace for her soul and her soulmate.

“We had our first date and 16 days later, we went for ashes together,” said Myers. “This is a blessed diocese.”

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Bishop Kulick told KDKA’s Ross Guidotti that the future of the diocese will be focused on academic and spiritual education.