The Wanderer: online edition

UPDATE: I am bumping this back to the top.  Let’s have another round.  If you have seen this before, thanks!  If you haven’t, read on!

The English language weekly The Wanderer has a new website and a new online edition available. 

It is possible to buy individual full editions of each number online.

I have been writing for The Wanderer for years.  The WDTPRS blog grew out of my weekly column in The Wanderer, which in its turn grew out of an project in the Catholic Online Forum many years ago.

Check out their spiffy new site and tell ’em Fr. Z sent you.  I have been nagging for a long time to get something truly useful going on the internet and I see they finally pulled the trigger.  This is good news.

Do me a BIG favor.  Go to their site.  Consider purchasing an online edition of the paper.   If they get some good stats they will learn a couple things.  First, yes, the internet is here to stay.  Second, Fr. Z has some internet clout.

I want to hear them mumbling things like, "Fr. Z was right all along", and even, "Why did we wait so long?"

See if you can crash their server!  Heh heh!

PS: If you subscribe here, through Amazon, I get a small percentage.  This is for the printed edition, FYI.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Now Father, you are too not fair on yourself. Your blog is of immense value and usefulness to so many people. You bring things to our attention which a number of important and influential figures do not. You provide helpful catechesis and guidance to a huge numbers of Catholics across the globe. Your post on the ‘gentle man-of-steel’ was immensely important reading. Thi sblog is of no small importance Father, now keep up the good work and be assured of prayers!

  2. Diane says:

    I can’t believe they have actually done it!

    I predicted that little newspaper was going to die because they couldn’t get with the 21st century. I just hope they can keep up with the demands now that it is easier to order the print edition online. It could open the flood gates.

    Excellent! I think it will be a positive experience for them. I myself could not keep up with the print edition, which we got in our giftshop each week. But, with the online edition, I can go and read the articles that are truly of interest to me and not have all the paper piling up.

    Usually, an online edition is offered at a slight discount as there is nothing to mail. But, people need to consider that this is a weekly newspaper which will not be publishing a single article each week, but a load comparable to that of a weekly magazine. That means, by purchasing the online edition alone, you are spending about $1.00 weekly for all of that information.

    What is also good about this, is that the Wanderer can spread its wings and gain a global audience. I don’t think they have a clue just how vast the potential customer base is “out there”. And, by putting it on the web, it does not cause the level of work that it would if those were all mailed print editions.

    Fr. Z: Does this in any way affect your ability to publish your own column, now that it will be available online via the Wanderer?

    I am assuming they have a provision for international sales of the online edition???

    Thanks Fr. Z – I’ll point this out on my blog too. I’m only getting a modest 250-300 hits daily in contrast to your thousands, but I know there are folks in my base who will be interested.

    Deo Gratias!

  3. Diane: I am not sure what I will do about my column. That will require some thought. I want to respect the paper’s need to earn money and my column is, I believe, one of the features that have helped inspire subscriptions. We shall see.

  4. Woody Jones says:

    Done and subscribed to.

    As we say down here in Tejas, “Ud. es el hombre.” (“You the man” for those who no habla cristiano).

  5. Diane says:

    Fr. Z: I was kind of thinking along the same lines.

    Many well-established papers ask for a grace period of 30 days or more. The Wanderer is a fledgling out there and they will need the subscriptions. It takes money to run a heavily-trafficked website as you have seen too, so that money will be used to aid with that as subscriptions grow.

    I’ll be subscribing in the coming days, and plugging it on my own blog.

  6. Diane: Fledgling? You must be joking. The Wanderer is in volume 140.

    Fledgling on the internet, perhaps. I would hardly put 140 years old, in the “novice” category.

    But competition there is and they are now working better with this technology. Their old site…well.. it stank. The new one is pretty slick!

  7. Diane says:

    LOL Fr. Z. Thanks for pointing this out.

    I did, in fact mean, “fledgling” on the internet.

    My dad was reading that paper back in 70’s and 80’s. I think that is where he learned that Richard McBrien’s “Catholicism” was not quite so Catholic when I had began taking a Theology 101 course at the local seminary in the early 90’s which had been using it as the primary textbook. Thinking about it now, I know it was The Wanderer, which alerted him to the poblems with that book I was given to use. I argued with him at first, but then other things started to happen in that class that made me uncomfortable enough to drop it (Rosary jokes, pokes at anything traditional, and a general “looseness” on doctrine, and other things that had bells going off). Thankfully, that seminary has undergone much change.

    Looking back, I’m glad he put up a fuss after reading about it in The Wanderer.

    Ref 1

    Ref 2 – NCCB warning (now USCCB)

  8. Henry Edwards says:

    PS: If you subscribere here, through Amazon, I get a small percentage, FYI.

    But only for print-edition subscriptions. I hope you also get a cut of e-subscriptions by people directed to the Wanderer site from

  9. Henry: Right… that is for print subscriptions. I also hope they give me a taste for sending traffic.

    As a matter of fact, if I can show them that people subscribed because they found out about it here, that will be a good motivation.

  10. jeffrey says:

    I’ve wanted to subscribe for years but I refuse to use the mails for such purposes. I’m so glad for this and I immediately subscribed.

  11. ray from mn says:

    I haven’t thoroughly examined their offer but what I would like to see would be an offer where I could purchase a particular issue. Or a particular article.

    I talked to them once about getting access to their articles where I might abstract them and post them on Stella Borealis with a link for purchasing. But it was like talking to a brick wall.

    I could probably abstract them without violating copyright, but I don’t want to do all that typing and proofreading.

  12. ray: I believe that is precisely what they have going now. Go to the site and check it out.

  13. Anna says:

    Regarding the voting options, you should have had a “None of the above” option.
    Or, perhaps an option like this: “Not the Wanderer! I subscribe to the Remnant!”

  14. Anna: I am happy to present options for “tunnel vision”, but not for “funnel vision”. Subscribing to one does not exclude subscription to other periodicals.

  15. jeffrey says:

    You know what? The new site has it exactly backwards. They make their online material restricted for paid online subscribers, and then provide a mail-in form to buy regular subscriptions. But if you want to subscribe to the regular print edition, there is no easy way to do it. You have to buy a book.

    This is the old economy model. They should make all material online for free so that people can link to it and view it and be persuaded to buy a real sub, and then make it easy to sub online to the hard copy.

    What are they thinking? When will Catholics learn that old ways are great for liturgy and music and doctrine but not for magazine management.

  16. Henry Edwards says:

    Anna: I am happy to present options for “tunnel vision”, but not for “funnel vision”. Subscribing to one does not exclude subscription to other periodicals.

    Father Z: I assumed Anna had a serious question. Whether those who said “Not The Wanderer! No Way!” said this because of Remnant proclivities, or because of NCReporter proclivities.

  17. Fr Martin Fox says:


    I am sorry to say, I used to subscribe to the Wanderer, probably 10 years ago or so, but dropped it because I found the paper so bilious. It seemed to me the paper went too far on the subject of homosexuality — beyond the proper explication of what the Church teaches, to simply being nasty toward homosexual persons. Another example was an article on my archbishop. The article reported on a talk he gave; part of what he said was legitimately subject of criticism, but another part was something I can’t imagine the Wanderer disagreeing with. The article gave about equal space to each part. Guess which the editors put in the headline?

    Father, I like your site, and I like your columns.

  18. Henry Edwards says:

    From Christian Order‘s links page :

    The Wanderer – Legendary, plain speaking, hard-hitting weekly. Simply the best Catholic newspaper in the world.”

    For what it’s worth. (Well, at least it includes “simply the best Catholic column in the world”.)

  19. jeffrey: Why whould they give it away? How can they make a profit doing that?
    The days of mostly free online content are coming to an end.

    Fr. Fox: I agree that at times some of The Wanderer columns can read like a
    high-end Weekly World News: “Big Scandal: there are Catholic schools that
    are not actually Catholic!” or “Some churches are really ugly!”-like those
    are news flashes to any thinking Catholic. However, I subscribe because
    there are several really good columnists: Fr. Cusick, Fr. Altier, Fr. Z.
    I, also, really enjoy Thomas Roeser’s ongoing series on Illinois politics.

    My biggest gripe is that they have no “Letters to the Editor” section.

    If you keep your reasonability cap on, and consider that each writer in the paper has their own personality and POV, it’s a fine read. Come to think of it, I’m amazed that the newspaper lets each of its writers personalities and viewpoints thru, you don’t see that much these days.
    But, I don’t think anyone should be reading anything without serious personal reflection.

  20. Henry Edwards says:

    If you keep your reasonability cap on, and consider that each writer in the paper has their own personality and POV, it’s a fine read. Come to think of it, I’m amazed that the newspaper lets each of its writers personalities and viewpoints thru, you don’t see that much these days.
    But, I don’t think anyone should be reading anything without serious personal reflection.

    Very incisive comments, all. But I have a good Catholic friend who once canceled his subscription to The Wanderer on the basis that it was just too discouraging take his truth about the Church is such big doses.

  21. Mark Johnson says:

    I’m so glad! I have enjoyed The Wanderer in the past, when someone sent me a trial subscription, but just can’t afford an entire year. Being able to buy single issues will be great!

  22. ray from mn says:


    I called up the Wanderer and checked on the price. They don’t even have an option where you don’t get the printed edition.

    They are just throwing in the electronic edition for free which most would probably get a few days sooner than they do now.

    And it appears that they are giving three issues away for free on a trial basis.

    Mailing 52 (or so) issues of the paper must cost something. You’d think that they could sell the electronic edition for somewhat less than $50 a year.

    They really could use somebody who knows something about marketing.

  23. Paul Murnane says:


    Re: “I called up the Wanderer and checked on the price. They don’t even have an option where you don’t get the printed edition.”

    It looks as if they offer an e-edition only for $50 and the printed paper/e-edition combo is $100. You would think they would offer the combo for alot less than $100. It would seem $70 would be about right – close enough so they would get a pretty high percentage of subscribers to kick in an extra $20, but not too high so many print subscribers won’t bother. It’ll be an interesting case study to watch

    BTW, I went a stretch of about 6 weeks without receiving any print editions, so I called them up and found out you can get the print edition mailed 1st class for $90/yr. I don’t know why they don’t have that option on Amazon or list it anywhere.

  24. ray from mn says:


    The Wanderer has been owned by the same family for 140 years or so. I doubt they get MBAs to staff their (probably non-existent) marketing department. Few of their employees probably have worked for another publication.

    Here in the Twin Cities, there is probably only one location where it can be purchased. But their market is indeed pretty small.

  25. Paul Murnane says:


    I hear you. What seems obvious to one person, may not be so obvious to another. I do hope they are successful in their web rollout and that it increases awareness of the paper (and increase circulation).

  26. Marco says:

    I’ve been reading The Wanderer since the early 1970s. It’s one of the best Catholic weeklies in English. Finally they’re on the Net, but I will not give up my print subscription.

  27. tim says:

    Father, you have to go to confession. You have preyed on me, who am highly suggestible.

    Now, tell me to drink a Guinness.

  28. tim says:

    Ok, Father, you are forgiven. I just read my first online edition. The graphics and interface, and really just the entire interactive experience, was extremely well done. All newspapers should be that easy to use online.

    Now, tell me to drink a Guinness anyway.

  29. Mark says:

    Personally, I prefer the Remnant. The Wonderer apprears a bit too “liberal” for my taste from the 3-4 issues I have read. I have a feeling those who subscribe would disagree.

    So tell me, why should I subscribe to this “rag” as well? As a Traditionalist, and I imagine many of you out there would perhaps label yourselves as Traditionalist, what does the Wanderer offer us?

    I may reconsider a subscription, depending on your answers.

    Con Fides,


  30. Marco says:

    Unswerving fidelity to the papacy and the Magisterium. Unhinged “sede vacantists” need not apply!

Comments are closed.