Sleepless at the moment – PRAY!

I can’t sleep.  It is 0130 right now and I am hoping I can get back to the land o’ nod.

In the meantime, I will ask your continuing prayers for the sake of the greater unity of the Church.

Think of what a gift it would be.  

But the Enemy is crafty and strong.

Pray, therefore. 

Perhaps there is some penance you can perform for this good intention, namely, that during this turning point of great potential God strengthen and enlighten all those concerned who serve the Holy See and those who are members of the the SSPX, especially Bp. Fellay.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Bob K. says:

    Take a little swig of some Whiskey and go to sleep Father. Instead of counting sheep jumping the fence. Count SSPX members jumping back over to Rome. He He !!. I will pray for Bishop Fellay!.

  2. Rudy B says:

    A good old-fashioned Friday fast sounds in right order!

  3. Mark says:

    You’re not alone Father… I will heed your call to prayer.

  4. Mark M says:

    Unity should be very much in our minds; honestly I find it hard to sleep too.

    There’s the Orthodox talking about the Eastern Catholic Churches returning to Orthodoxy without breaking unity with Rome, the Traditional Anglicans holding their breath for the CDF’s decision… and then the SSPX!

    Many, many prayers!

  5. Mac McLernon says:

    Praying for the intention of unity… and also that you manage to get some sleep!

  6. Kradcliffe says:

    I assumed you never slept, anyway.

    Are you having trouble sleeping because of this SSPX situation?

    I pray you are asleep, now, and that you wake up rested in the morning, refreshed and ready to keep fighting the good fight.

    I will do penance for the intention of Church unity.

  7. Dean says:

    I can’t sleep either Father… I started writing (which I’m still doing right now) in hopes it will clear my mind and get me tired enough to sleep. But anyway, the point is, you’re not alone. :)

    My prayers are with you for sleep and rest, and with Bp. Fellay and the unity of Holy Mother Church!

    Blessings and peace,

  8. Rob in Maine says:

    Get an iPod or other MP3 player, Father. I go to sleep every night litening to Gregorian chant, Fr Groeschel’s voice or something soothing like that.

    Rob in Maine

  9. Brian Wisconsin says:

    Pray, pray, pray. Fast. The rumblings from the inner SSPX circle are not good. May the Holy Spirit send them the grace to see that true Rome is the Rome of the popes and, most especially, the current Pope, that you cannot go astray under his leadership, but that all separation — no matter how compelling at the moment — ultimately leads to the destruction of souls and great damage to the very institution they claim to want to protect: the Church. God be praised. May His will be done, and may His gracious assistance be always with us. All you angels and saints, pray for us.

  10. Lynne says:

    When I have trouble getting back to sleep, saying 3 Hail Mary’s seems to work. I’m really hoping you’ve fallen back to sleep by now!


  11. Corboy says:

    If I can’t sleep I just have another beer.

  12. Ligusticus says:

    RINUNCE E NOMINE , 27.06.2008


    Il Santo Padre Benedetto XVI ha accolto la rinunzia presentata, per raggiunti limiti d’età, dall’ Card. Camillo Ruini agli incarichi di Vicario Generale di Sua Santità per la Diocesi di Roma e di Arciprete della Papale Arcibasilica Lateranense ed ha chiamato a succedergli nei medesimi incarichi l’ Card. Agostino Vallini, finora Prefetto del Supremo Tribunale della Segnatura Apostolica.


    Il Santo Padre ha nominato Prefetto del Supremo Tribunale della Segnatura Apostolica S.E. Mons. Raymond Leo Burke, finora Arcivescovo di Saint Louis.

  13. Calleva says:

    I’ve been offering up my little aches and pains as well as prayers for this intention. Offer up your sleeplessness!

    I agree with Brian, the rumblings from the SSPX don’t bode well. I am praying for a great outpouring of grace, a yearning for unity. This is one time we really do have to fling ourselves onto God, imploring his mercy and recognising that human input is pretty much spent.

    Prayers, fasting, offering up, penances… who knows how many more will jump back over the sheepfold, even if their leaders remain stubborn?

  14. Paul Haley says:

    Father Z, May the peace that only Our Lord can give descend upon you, quiet your troubled soul and restore your spirit in the knowledge that He, alone, is in charge and He will not fail us ever. God bless you, Paul.

  15. When you posted the prayer request the other day for the SSPX I immediately started adding them into my Divine Mercy Chaplet I pray daily for those who have left the Church. The three o’clock Divine Mercy prayers are very powerful. Remember that whatever you ask God the Father in the Name of Jesus, it will be granted to you if it is in conformity with the Will of God. I am sure this request is in conformity with His Holy Will.

  16. Tiny says:

    When Fr. Z can’t sleep does he browse his blog like the rest of us who can’t sleep?

  17. Jrbrown says:

    At the Mass I attended this morning, I united my intentions with all those praying for a good outcome, and prayed that God would grant Bp. Fellay special graces during this time of decision. I might also suggest praying for each and every priest of the SSPX, as many of them are assuredly struggling just as much as everyone else at this tme.

  18. Andrew White says:

    1)Then he saith to his disciples, the harvest indeed is great, but the labourers are few.
    2)Et unam, sanctam, catholicam et apostolicam Ecclesiam.

    The laborers of the SSPX are needed in the harvest of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. Their efforts are needed to repel the novelties that are creeping in, and to repair the damage of the last 40 years. May the Holy Ghost guide Bishop Fellay to unity with the Roman Pontiff. For the sake of both the SSPX and the Universal Church.

  19. Garry says:

    I liked the ‘sheep jumping back over the fence’ image. But seriously, the Seven Holy Sleepers (aka Youths) of Ephesus are the patrons of insomnia. Try counting the seven of them jumping over a fence (which does feature, tangentially, in their hagiography)

  20. Chris says:

    For what it’s worth, from Bishop Williamson’s blog. Doesn’t look good:

    Thursday, June 26, 2008

    Stick Again

    Eleison Comments LII

    Rumors abound once more: before the end of June, in other words in a few days’ time, either the Society of St. Pius X will begin to give way to Rome’s demands to conform to Vatican II and the New Mass, or Rome will declare to Church and world that the Society and its followers are in formal schism and out of the Church.

    As to rumors of the Society taking any action that would imperil the defense of the Faith, I think they are to be wholly discounted. On May 5 of 1988 in particular, Archbishop Lefebvre went as far as the Faith would allow him, and even a little bit further, to come to terms with the Church authorities, but their terms finally persuaded him that they could no longer be trusted to look after the Church’s immutable Tradition, which is why he went ahead with the episcopal consecrations of 20 years ago.

    Similarly, ever since the Society’s Jubilee Pilgrimage to Rome in 2000, the Society has gone as far as it could to correspond to the goodwill gestures of Cardinal Castrillon, and even a little bit further, but in eight years it has never given to the Cardinal that abandonment of the Society’s stand on Tradition that he wanted. On the contrary, the latest Letter to Friends and Benefactors of the Society’s Superior General reiterated firmly that stand, which is surely where the rumors come from of the Cardinal losing patience with his eight years of carrot, and turning once more to the stick.

    Catholics should in no way be frightened by any threat of being declared formally, i.e. properly and officially, in schism, or out of the Church. Proper Catholic officialdom would judge, like Our Lord tells us to judge (Jn. VII,24), by reality and not by appearances. The reality is obvious: it is the Conciliar “Renovation” and not Catholic Tradition that has broken with the Catholic Church.

    However, when in the next few days the Society makes no gesture towards Rome sufficient for Rome’s purpose of dissolving the resistance of Catholic Tradition, I am for my part not at all sure that Rome will really go ahead with any declaration of formal schism. Maybe after eight, or 20, or 38 years of the Society’s resistance they really are losing patience, but does not all past experience tell them that each time they use the stick, it stiffens rather than dissolves that resistance?

    And if they did go ahead with such a declaration, Catholics should rejoice, because after several years of some ambiguity there would once more be some clarity ! Twenty years ago, all Society Superiors gathered in Econe rejoiced in their bishops’ “excommunication”. Would not the same thing happen this time round if Rome also cast priests and laity into its outer darkness ? Not that any of us would rejoice in Rome’s self-abasement… Kyrie eleison.

    Munich, Germany
    Posted by Bishop Richard Williamson at 2:50 PM

  21. Father Z:

    I offered Mass yesterday at a local nursing home for the unity of Christians, and explained to the folks there we were praying for the holy father’s efforts in this regard.

  22. JM says:


    Il Santo Padre ha nominato Prefetto del Supremo Tribunale della Segnatura Apostolica S.E. Mons. Raymond Leo Burke, finora Arcivescovo di Saint Louis.


    It is a sad loss for St. Louis, but the Holy Father could not have made a better choice for the Church.

  23. Matt of South Kent says:

    If SSPX came back to full communion with the Church, would Fr. Williamson be a Bishop?

  24. Phil says:

    @JM: are you sure that’s actually a full-time position? I thought most of the canonists on the major tribunals did this work together with their normal duties if they have them. I could be wrong, but please check.

    @Matt of South Kent: I fear that even if bischop Fellay responds favorably, Williamson will lead part of the SSPX into the wilderness. So my assumption is that the question is academic. However, should he accept as well,
    his ordination was valid (right?). The fact that it was an illicit act doesnt change that. So if the excommunication is lifted, he’d be a bishop of the Catholic Church. The only comment I’ll make on that is that the Pope will
    need a very smart solution for that problem too, should it present itself. Afterall, obedience to the Holy Father isn’t his strong suit…

  25. Chris says:

    All bishops remain bishops.

    The question in, would he stick with the SSPX or become a break away independent.

    In Virginia, we have a church close by that is SSPX friendly but not technically run by the Society. Every year, H.E. Williamson shows up for confirmations.

    If the Society is brought into full communion, this church would have to go to some nut bishop for consecrations if they didn’t somehow come into the fold as well.

    That’s another huge consideration — what happens to all the independent churches that rely on the SSPX bishops but aren’t SSPX?

  26. JM says:

    Yes. Burke is moving to Rome sometime this summer and should be named a cardinal at some point.

  27. JM says:

    “If the Society is brought into full communion, this church would have to go to some nut bishop for consecrations if they didn’t somehow come into the fold as well.”

    I’m assuming consecrations=confirmation

    And Bishop Williamson hasn’t said a lot of really nutty things in public.

  28. Chris says:

    Yes, sorry, very early and very busy! I mean confirmations.

    By “nut” bishop I mean some sedevacantist or Thuc line bishop.

    But this logistical issue does become a real concern if the SSPX does indeed sign the agreement.

  29. Tom says:

    Pray pray pray!

    If the SSPX is having second thoughts they should consider who is opposed to this unity.

  30. dark_coven says:

    “There’s the Orthodox talking about the Eastern Catholic Churches returning to Orthodoxy without breaking unity with Rome, the Traditional Anglicans holding their breath for the CDF’s decision… and then the SSPX”

    Well it seems that everyone is becoming tired of remaining divided, most especially the Eastern “Orthodox” who are divided and bickering among themselves e.g. Pitting Greek Orthodoxy against Russian Orthodoxy.

  31. Michael R. says:

    “In Virginia, we have a church close by that is SSPX friendly but not technically run by the Society. Every year, H.E. Williamson shows up for confirmations.

    If the Society is brought into full communion, this church would have to go to some nut bishop for [confirmations]if they didn’t somehow come into the fold as well.”

    Some would say, “And this will be different how?”

  32. Leslie says:

    SSPX has refused according to reuters.

    very sad news if it is true………

  33. Leslie says:

    whoops……… computer is not loading this blog with the new entries for some reason.

  34. Does anyone know how many ordinations the SSPX had this year in Econe?

  35. LA says:

    Dear Fr. Z.,
    While I am grateful for your prayers for unity within the Church, I would caution you to take a step back from seeing this ultimatum as such a black and white clear-cut issue. There is a lot of confusion in the Church now because of the liberalism that has tainted so many in the Church hierarchy, not to mention all the confusing changes these last 40 years.

    In the big scheme of things, I do not think you nor I have the “grace of state” to know with such certitude what should be done by the SSPX in this case. I will just pray for God’s will to be done, while not presuming to know God’s will and advocate one position over the other in this instance.

    I have confidence that the Pope, Hoyos, and Fellay will sincerely try to do their best in following God’s will as they see it, which is all that can be expected of anyone.

    So, Father, RELAX, ok? Don’t take this so personal… let the big boys handle it. [You have got to be kidding me!]

  36. Cathguy says:

    If the SSPX does not return (and I sincerely hope and pray that they do!) for me, it is further evidence that the Church MUST return to her traditional roots. We must proclaim the fullness of Catholic truth, in word and deed.

    Traditionalists feel anger and upset. They cannot open up their mouths in front of their co-religionists without being called names. Requests for the TLM under the Motu Proprio are ignored, or called “extreme.” Young priests seem open and interested. Most around here seem openly hostile. Even with all the evidence to the contrary, priests and lay people still talk about the wonderful renewal caused by the VII Mass. Just saying it over and over again doesn’t make it so!

    When was the last time you heard a sermon on the evils of contraception in Church for instance? (Is that “pre-conciliar” too?)

    The faithful of SSPX are called “schismatics” and “heretics” yet 90% of the novus ordo attending laity are popping contraceptive pills, using condoms, and presenting themselves for communion. When they do receive communion it resembles standing in cue to get a cookie for all the reverence they show.

    What is going on?!

    Let us pray for unity. If it doesn’t happen, let us ALL advocate for a full return of the TLM, a full return ALL the pre-conciliar rites. We must give traditionalist faithful a comfortable home IN THEIR HOME PARISHES by offering the TLM in every Church in the world!

  37. Chris says:

    Michael R said: ‘Some would say, “And this will be different how?”

    It’s different because, if he chose to, H.E. Williamson would be a bishop tomorrow in full communion with Rome by invitation of our Holy Father. The Holy Father is not showing that same zeal for outreach to Thuc line and sedevacantist bishops.

    Therefore, say what you will about him, he’s obviously seen by the Holy Father as a man worth bringing into the fold and therefore not a “nut” that I was pointing to.

    He can be called crazy, nutty, whatever because of his views on Freemasons, conspiracies, what have you. But at least he’s not teachy heresy or promoting the destruction of the faith like so many our of prelates in full communion. W

    What’s worse?

  38. Atlanta says:

    I couldn’t sleep last night either and I thought of our Lord’s agony in the Garden of Gethsemane. You know in the Orthodox church we commemorate His crucifixion every Friday and fast as listed prior, from meat, dairy, poultry, fish and sometimes wine and oil. We can always pray midnight office or matins if our minds are troubled. Or of course there is the Jesus Prayer “Lord Jesus Christ Son of God have mercy on me the sinner”. It seems a lot of churches are meeting in council right now. It must be that time of year. Thank you for your openness and honesty, it sets a beautiful spiritual example for the masses.

  39. Cathguy said:

    When was the last time you heard a sermon on the evils of contraception in Church for instance? (Is that “pre-conciliar” too?)

    I heard one last October in Myrtle Beach, SC, at a Mass in the Ordinary Form that was celebrated reverently. There was some chant, but mostly English hymns (which were traditional ones, as well). There was a bit of Latin (Sanctus) and Greek (Kyrie). But overall, it was English, including the Eucharistic Prayers. I, for one, would be completely satisfied if Mass at my own parish was celebrated as such. I don’t need the entire Extraordinary Form, just a properly celebrated Ordinary Form.

    At this Mass in Myrtle Beach, the priest discussed the importance of purity and the fact that contraception is a mortal sin, as is sex outside the bonds of marriage. He discussed, too, the evils of abortion, if I’m not mistaken. (It was Pro Life Sunday, and he hit on ALL topics relating to the sanctity of human life.)

    It happens. Let’s not make assumptions that Catholics who go to the Ordinary Rite have love for neither Traditions (and traditions) or the teachings of Holy Mother Church. We do. And we developed that love growing up with the Mass of Paul VI.

    (BTW, I believe I blogged about Mass that weekend last October at Domestic Vocation. You’re welcome to come over and do a quick search of blog posts to see what I said about it.)

  40. Time to close this.

    I got some sleep at last.

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