Robert P. Lockwood, former president of Our Sunday Visitor, longtime columnist for OSV Newsweekly and former director of communications for the Diocese of Pittsburgh, died March 4 at his home in Fort Wayne, Ind., after suffering from various illnesses. He was 69.
Lockwood, a native of Yonkers, was remembered by former colleagues and others in the Catholic press as “a gift” to the Catholic Church and to Catholic journalism and publishing.
“Bob Lockwood has made a singular contribution to Catholic publishing in this country,” said Greg Erlandson, who is director and editor-in-chief of Catholic News Service. “As president of Our Sunday Visitor Publishing, he brought a strong sense of mission and of audience.
“Bob may be best known for his columns. He was the poet laureate of growing up Catholic in the early 1960s, and he had a knowing affection for ordinary Catholics living their faith without fanfare or controversy,” added Erlandson, a former president and publisher of Our Sunday Visitor.
Lockwood joined the staff of Our Sunday Visitor, based in Huntington, Ind., shortly after graduating from Fairfield University in Connecticut in 1971.
He was named editor of the newspaper’s magazine section in 1977 and became editor-in-chief in 1983. He was the first lay editor-in-chief. Lockwood also was appointed director of Our Sunday Visitor’s religious books division.
In 1990, he was appointed president of Our Sunday Visitor. He developed three new magazines—The Catholic Answer, Catholic Heritage and Catholic Parent.
He resigned from Our Sunday Visitor in 1999 and served briefly as director of research for the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights.
In 2001, he was named director of communications for the Diocese of Pittsburgh and also became general manager of the Pittsburgh Catholic, the diocesan newspaper. In 2014, he retired and moved back to Indiana.
“Every other week for the past 30 years,” Lockwood “consistently and brilliantly” wrote a column for OSV Newsweekly, Gretchen R. Crowe, editor-in-chief, wrote March 5.
Lockwood was the author of numerous books, including “A Guy’s Guide to the Good Life: Virtues for Men,” published by Servant Books in 2009. It was awarded “Best Popular Presentation of the Faith” by the Catholic Press Association in 2011.
He is survived by his wife, Cindy, and a son and daughter, and two brothers and a sister.—CNS