Update on WDTPRS

Under another entry I made a comment that I was considering shutting down the blog.

I have since gotten lots of urgent and unhappy e-mails.

Sorry about that.

Let me clarify.

I guess what I am really getting at is that a change of pace might be in order.

The blog is a lot of work and I have some other very important things I need to apply myself to.

I also am starting to think about the print version of WDTPRS, the weekly column in The Wanderer.

But WDTPRS has become a fairly important force in the Catholic blogosphere, which is largely due to you readers and your faithful participation.  The traffic here is very high.

So now that the issue of the new liturgical translation is pretty much being resolved, and now that the implementation Summorum Pontificum is pretty much unstoppable, I am rethinking what this is all about.

Dunno…. new name and direction?  New pace?  New focus?  Group blog to take the pressure off a little?

I’m just thinking some things over.

Anyway… I am not going to do anything overly dramatic in the immediate future. 

The blog has been a wonderful experience, you are very supportive, and your feedback in various forms makes a difference.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in SESSIUNCULA. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Derik Castillo says:

    Dear Fr. Z.

    Thanks for the clarification. Your blog have helped to shape my mind
    with respect to the Catholic Tradition. Every once in a while,
    however, your gentle but firm steering is still needed.

  2. Supertradmom says:

    In addition to my comment on the other article on funerals, let me add that you have a very strong following among college and graduate students, mostly young traditional men, who rarely write to you, but who check out your blog regularly. I know these lads personally. These men are the future of the Church and learn much from you, as I do. Please keep up the good,and yes,hard work….

  3. Dove says:

    Dear Fr. Z,
    Thank you for the clarification. I have just breathed a sigh of relief!
    With regard to a possible name-change for the blog, I would like to suggest that you leave the name the same. It has name-recognition. It’s not necessary for the name of a blog to reflect its actual nature. It would take years for other sites to catch up to the new name, and what good would be served?

  4. Agnes B. Bullock says:

    Thank you Father- I offer my services, be that as they may, to keep you on the Internet.

  5. Brian Day says:

    Fr Z,

    How about joining the group at NLM? While you are not about the “New Liturgical Movement”, what you do post dovetails very nicely with their entries. I think the synergy would quite wonderful.

    Obviously I am not in a position to offer joining their team, [That is a rather important point, you know. o{]:¬) ] but it is something to consider if you want to devote more time to other issues.

  6. Fr. Steve says:

    Fr. Z,
    Here’s a little suggestion. WDTPRS can be a deeper question than, what should the translation actually be. The question really gets behind the intent and the sacred Tradition that undlies the composed prayers of the Church. We need to understand in a deeper way the ordinary form of the Mass in continuity with this Traditiion and the Extraordinary form as a part of a LIVING Traditiion. We still need this service. You have my prayers.

  7. Terth says:


    I am overjoyed that you may not be closing down the blog. Though it is your creature to continue or not, we readers have felt a sort of ownership of your posts as gifts to us. A change of direction might be a happy medium for all. Less work for you, less of a good thing that we don’t deserve anyway for us.

    Perhaps a blog by committee might be a way to go. The NLM seems to be a good example of this working well. You’d just have to choose your collaborators with care. However, the Fr. Z. insights on current (and pre-current) events must remain a mainstay! Also, I wonder how much the NLM gets in advertising revenue from the items posted along the side of their blog. You might want to employ a select few advertisers to give you a steady flow of cash without disparaging the look you desire for the blog. This may help to reduce the stress of running this blog. Just a thought.

  8. Christabel says:


  9. Phillip says:

    Thank you, Father, and may God bless you for all of your work. Thank you.

  10. FHC says:

    Whew……. I started to write on the very clever movie quote thread and realized that I had no right to put in my two cents worth. All I could think was:

    “Beam me up Scotty” and could you take us with you. We need a Catholic sanctuary. Want proof that despite the change in liturgy and the bricks landing on top of bricks it is still a weird and wacky Catholic scene? July 6th, Nevada, a) put your wafer in the dish on entering; b) sing God bless America for the entry song (was the Fourth of July weekend; c) no kneelers–so stand during consecration; d) hold hands for the Lord’s Prayer; e) listen to a good guitar playing singer who endeavored to teach us to respond in Spanish (it was an English Mass). I’m hanging in there but your blog does provide some solid Catholic bulwarking. By all means adapt. Just don’t disappear. I and others need you. So please accept my thanks. This isn’t 2 cents worth, just a sincere thank you.

  11. Jim C says:


    I don’t think you know just how important an Orthodox voice ‘crying in the wilderness’ is to those of us who live in wastelands. Just to see a priest standing up for the Faith with no apology is a great gift to the faithful. I doubt anything else other than the things of our Lord surpass this in importance.

  12. Wendy says:

    Sigh of relief coming from this corner.

  13. Oremus says:

    Glad you are not doing anything yet. I am not sure how much I have contributed, just basically here for the ride…haha. Do enjoy your blog.

  14. Romulus says:

    Father you know better than anyone how many of your readers are in Rome or even Vatican City. One assumes you blog and do journalism (among other stuff) because you have something to say. I’d say as much, and would add that because of this as well as the way you present yourself you have attracted an unusually choice readership. I’m sure it’s become a burden to you — or maybe “cross” is the better word. Would this have come together so marvelously and to such effect without the will of God?

    I have never minded your longstanding emphasis on translation because I’ve assumed for you it’s not a narrow technical question but has a bearing on faith and the Christian life. Those concerns remain relevant and pressing. Moreover, notwithstanding all the good work of the Holy Father (whom God preserve), the liturgy remains in deep crisis. Catechesis remains in deep crisis. For most of the Mystical Body the sacramental life hangs by a thread. The sensus Catholicus, able to see the world and history and itself in a Catholic way not conformed to this age, is in crisis.

    I hesitate to say this publicly, and especially to employ jargon so badly abused in recent years, but this blog has a prophetic role if it will accept it. No point in shutting up when some of the people who most need to hear are only beginning to listen. For the good of the Church, certain things need to be said; certain conversations need to take place. If not here, where?

  15. Thank you, dear Father, for not abandoning this noble work, even though it is quite an askesis for you. You serve as a valuable ecumenical link for the greater Christian community that benefits from your clear voice for traditional liturgical texts. Our prayers and best wishes.

  16. Paul the Other says:

    Deo gratias indeed. For a wild minute there I was afraid I was going to have to get a life.

  17. Lucia says:

    This is the only place I get a liturgical take on things, so I’d like it if you would still incorporate that, but otherwise obviously you know what you’re doing! :)

  18. What was I aiming at when I started this blog?

    My first thought was to create my own site, apart from anyone else’s, where I could archive and distribute my own articles I was writing for The Wanderer and other publications.

    But the blog rapidly evolved into something else.

    Then, when I saw there was opposition organizing against the norms for translation issued by the Holy See, I figured I had to get into the trench and help fight off the attacks.

    When Summorum Pontificum came out, and I saw the reactions from some quarters, even from some bishops, I made the determination that they weren’t going to suppress the provisions given by the Holy Father, they weren’t going to silence priests or people who wanted the old Mass.  It wasn’t going to happen again.  It wasn’t going to be Ecclesia Dei adlflicta all over again.  Not on my watch.

    Another thing I have tried to do here is provide a place for some people, especially traditionalists, to blow off some steam.

    There are a lot of wounded souls out there and they have had no voice for decades. 

    I tried to provide a voice.

    I have been trying to defend the rights of traditionalists, and anyone who simply wants to benefit from their Catholic patrimony. 

    It belongs to all of us and we have a right to experience it.

    However, this is something that has produced a lot of headaches for me as well. 

    For example, some people don’t know how to self-edit.   They rudely use my blog to dump very unwelcome comments.  It’s as if they think they can walk into some else’s house and leave something nasty on the carpet.  Rubes.

    The fact that I allow latitude for people who were so marginalized in the Church to blow off steam has also brought me criticism in some places.

    So, in some respects, it’s lose/lose. 

    So you might understand how I might want to rethink what I am doing here.

    You know, I could have done this all anonymously.  But I chose to grit my teeth and sign my name.

    So, this blog brings joys but also lots of headaches. 

    Just so you have some context.

  19. Lucia says:

    having just read that, I would 100% understand if you just got read of the comment boxes…but remember blessed are the persecuted so if you get criticism for what you think is right, it is not necessarily lose-lose :)

  20. DocJim says:

    So, in some respects, it’s lose/lose.

    If it is lose, lose, then stop it or join forces.
    I can readily understand the problems of “criticism in some places” and those could be important places.
    Your work on wdtprs.com has been importantly pastoral for many people (myself included as a worn-out Anglican trying to get across the Tiber). Your blog has been a very regular, daily stopping place.
    Your efforts inform, but they also stimulate thinking and promote reverence. It would be hard to find much better effectiveness for a priest. I hate to think that my including your name in a rosary intention for a long time has come to this, but God’s will be done.
    I will certainly miss your writings, if you depart this blog, but I am sure you will continue to serve God in an effective manner. I just hope this continues!

    Thanks again for the past 2.5 years that I have been regularly reading this.

  21. LCB says:

    Keep the title “What Does the Prayer Really Say?” For three reasons

    1) It’s branded, and branding is invaluable
    2) The phrase has deep meaning beyond the surface. One of our goals as faithful Catholics is to be drawn deeper into the mystery, and that is done through understanding what the prayer really says
    3) What Does the Prayer Really Say has, in many ways, become a rallying cry. The idea of wdtprs.com/blog is much deeper and more powerful than the actual posts. It is THE internet bulwark against the barbarians at the gate. For many of us held prisoner by the barbarians, it’s the bright light on top of a hill, and a flag of how things could be. That’s hope, and that’s a priceless commodity.

    Consider the following steps:
    1) Change the focus of the blog, perhaps by adding a new subtitle.
    2) Shifting this to a group blog. I think this is an idea whose time has come, because this blog is now more than 1 person… it represents an authentic grassroots movement. Select permanent group blog members from a variety of spheres: different countries, lay and clerical state, students and professors, and so on. Guest posters can also be brought in from time to time.

    Fr. Z,
    For the WDTPRS project (as in, all that WDTPRS has come to stand for to so many of us) to be really successful it must go beyond one man. For the WDTPRS to be truly successful, it must eventually be able to flourish without you. Start taking those gradual steps now, and when the time is right for you to step aside you will have accomplished something unique and marvelous by the grace of Almighty God–

    You will have been the first to found a functional parish on the web, and you will have been its first pastor. Eventually you expanded the pastoral staff (bringing in associate pastors and lay staff), and it will conclude with your well deserved retirement.

  22. Richard Morris says:

    you’re not going. Father Z we need you.
    I suggest we all say some prayers for Father Z. Also suggest some priests out there say mass for padre Z and his intentions, to help keepp his strength up….

  23. Brian says:

    Whatever your choice, thank you for your hard work, Father!
    One thing I notice about the Catholic blogosphere is that, in general, blogs addressing the corporal works of mercy are the focus of one kind of blog(ger) while liturgy is the domain of another persuasion of blog(ger). I know that the church touches things (everything!) that are too wide for any one blog to cover, but I kinda wish that there’d be more of a mix, so that we don’t ever feel dissuaded from getting involved in something because of a false “left/right” labeling.

  24. Jim says:

    Fr. Z.,

    I don’t know if a group blog would work, because the blog is you. And I’m with the others who believe that a name change might be detrimental. If you have pressing issues and there’s less of you to go around, so be it. I’d take quality over quantity. You could also maintain the site as a repository of your articles and other works, and migrate the commentary to an “email group” format. Just some thoughts.

  25. Iosephus says:

    I don’t know if it’s the majority of folks, but many, I’m sure, have become attached to your blog because you’re a good source for news, especially of news from Rome. Your site is a good place to check if there’s a rumor going about; we can find out whether it’s for real, and get an insider’s take on the matter.

  26. Deo volente says:

    Fr. Zuhlsdorf,

    I must confess personally that I came to know you through The Wanderer and always considered you an enormously gifted Latinist who really understands the Liturgy. I can’t imagine your time pressures. I have no idea what they must be! Perhaps a group blog with some bloggers of your own choosing could be the solution? That would give you more time and a fresh look at what you want to explore. The Catholic Thing is a new website that posts one article per day by different authors; it is quite amazing. That would be one approach.

    I saw a very funny article on “The Hermeneutics of Continuity” today concerning a secret plot with you in the Arctic. Fr. Finigan would be a fine person to collaborate with, for one, and there must be many others.

    In anything you decide, please know that my prayers are with you. You have many “fans” who never leave comments. I have met them.

    Pax vobiscum!

  27. Dear Father,

    I’m glad you made a separate post on this as it was somewhat of a blow to keep buried in the movie quote post. LOL

    As I stated there, the kind of blogging you’ve been doing, and the depth of work required in many of your posts has certainly got to be taxing at times. I have wondered how you have not burned out at the pace you have been keeping. I believe God has given you the strength to carry on a necessary apostolate with regards to liturgy and bringing people along.

    However, it would be selfish of us to deny you the ability to slow down some so you can take in other things needed for your own spiritual growth, development and well-being.

    At the same time, with the large readership you have developed (and you truly owe us nothing), it would be nice if you could continue in some capacity on the web. You have been a leader and have a flock greater than many parishes. Some of these people have no priest who will speak the fullness of the faith.

    I think you should consider a group blog – perhaps with the voices of several priests, young and old. The New Liturgical Movement is a great example of how a group blog can function, with each member focusing in certain areas of their own expertise.

    In order to free up your time for the work you are best at, it would be great if you could have someone else handling the nuts and bolts of administration, unless you really like doing that.

    Once again, I would love to see more in the area of patristics and the saints. We have so much to learn from them. You know how to find this stuff and help us how to apply it today.

    For whatever it is worth, I offered my afternoon visit to the Blessed Sacrament along with my daily Rosary for you this afternoon. God could certainly be calling you into a shift of some kind and my prayer was that you would find it and follow that grace.

    God bless – a grateful member of your “flock”.

  28. LCB says:

    Fr. Z,

    “Be calm and keep watch. The Devil, your enemy, is circling you like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, strong in faith.”

    It is my opinion that we are still in the night watch. Vigilance is still required because Tradition has enemies. WDTPRS: Keeping the Night Watch on behalf of Tradition.

    There are too many seminarians that depend on this blog to get them through the Asylum. Another 2 years, perhaps 3, and the ground game will be very different. Dozens of seminarians (if not more) will have been nourished by your blog during the formative years. What they learned here will manifest itself in parish life. Perhaps that’s another alternative focus for this blog: primarily aiming it at Priests and Seminarians. You’ve often talked about how Tradition and the Gregorian Rite deepen one’s understanding of the Priesthood.

    Perhaps it might be fruitful to solicit comments specifically from priests and seminarians about the future of this blog.

  29. Mitch says:

    Well I understand your pursuits and needs but u will be sorely missed. I enjoy so much this blog and all the insight you give to all of us..God Bless.

  30. Joe says:

    I am a young seminarian, only 22, and check your blog at least 3 times a day – you help in many ways, keep it going. I use your blog for many of my arguments in support of tradition!

  31. cathguy says:

    This is indeed very good news.

    I wish to ask some respectful questions that I know Father and many of you have considered already, but I think they are worth asking.

    Is the implementation of Motu Proprio truly a done deal?

    Some folks I have talked to (including some priests unfortunately) see the Motu Proprio as “dead on arrival.”

    In other words, “the people aren’t asking for it, we aren’t going to offer it.”

    As one prominent historian shared on this blog: the strategy seems to be to engage in a “holding action.” Wait wait wait and don’t implement. A new conclave can’t be that long away (LONG LIVE BENEDICT XVI!!! is what I say)

    Still, I think the strategy the opponents of tradition seem to be following is a good one. I am not a conspiracy theorist by the way. This isn’t a planned out strategy. They aren’t having meetings and having secret handshakes. Rather, if they oppose the M.P. it is a strategy they will end up following by default. That’s just human nature.

    This natural response could be powerful enough to kill or severely curtail the M.P.’s effects IMO.

    Second question: Is the reform of the reform a done deal?

    I wonder about this as well. What constitutes an abuse is different for different people. Mention the arguments in “The Spirit of the Liturgy” and people’s eyes glaze over.

    AND I fear that there may be blow back going on as well against those who advocate tradition. I know some of what has been said about more traditional priests around here BY THEIR BROTHERS (I am not talking about laity here, and I am not talking about internet rumors and heresay). It ISN’T pretty.

    The only thing I can and will say is that I have noticed priests can be VERY rough with each other.

    From my vantage point (albeit a VERY liberal region of the country) it does not look all that promising.

    That is not to say that I am pessimistic. I KNOW beauty will win out……. eventually. I just think we’re still in the thick of this thing, and the outcome is hardly yet known.

    What do others think?

  32. LCB says:

    Sorry for the multiple posts:

    Fr. Z, consider the following:

    If, by the time this blog closes, you have impacted 80 seminarians and 20 priests… you will have impacted 100 parishes.

    The average American parish serves apx. 2000 people (apx. 900 families). That means that your blog will have impacted parish life for 200,000 Catholics. And that doesn’t count future assignments for these good men. Or the fact that many will end up as pastor of 2-3 parishes in a cluster.

    Aim this blog at priests and seminarians and you will transform American Catholicism, and Catholicism in the West.

  33. Calleva says:

    Very few bloggers continue indefinitely, but in the case of WDTPRS I’d say that you have got an institution unique in the orthodox Catholic blogosphere. I’m not sure that a team would work, part of the charism (and pleasure) of this blog is that it is so personal. Perhaps you could step back for a while, reduce the number of daily entries and give yourself some breathing space?

    As to the occasional unwanted intruder, don’t all blogs and fora suffer from this? I’m sure you’ve seen Holy Smoke, which has a high number of nutjobs and trolls infesting the comboxes. Anyone who gives you flak about this needs an update about cyberspace. It attracts extremists and the mentally unstable. If moderating it is too time consuming (and stressful), could someone else help?

    As to the title, I am not particularly attached to the present one, as it’s so long and it took me ages to figure out what it meant. What about ‘Brick by Brick’? or if that would ‘upset a few people’, something more neutral on the lines of ‘Notes from the Sabine Farm’?

    Obviously you will decide after prayer and discernment, and you will have the prayers of the spiritual cohort which follows this blog. Discouragement can come from many sources (as you will know), burn-out, the evil one, unhelpful remarks from others, etc. Only you can decide about the blog’s future, but I do hope that you will remain a presence, in some way or other, in cyberspace.

    What other blog educates, informs, edifies and entertains in the same way?

  34. Richard says:

    Hello Fr. Z,

    I can only repeat what others have said: You’re a breath of fresh air. I check here daily. I can *live* without WDTPRS, but I’d rather not.

    Yet I know this also isn’t your day job. I think we’d all understand if you had to cut back.

    If it comes to that: fewer posts, perhaps, and more posts with the combox off.

    However you do it, and wherever you do it, keep up the great work. You have a lot of fans out here.

  35. A Seminarian says:

    Just a thought. I think you could do plenty of good without a change in acronym, and only a slight change in title, to “What does the priest really say?”

    Which is the question I wanted to ask, and expect to have for some time, when I’ve attended some masses – “No, seriously Father, I know what you said back there during….uh…”mass”, but what does the priest actually say (when he’s trying to do it right)?”

    With this, you could, of course, continue to expand on the theme you already take: what does the priest mean when he is saying such-and-such a prayer.

    Also, you could shift off into themes like “What does a good priest really say?” when he is confronted by soi-disant “difficult” cases of conscience, in response to an untimely natural death or a death of questionable circumstances, when he is arguing for orthodox positions over-against certain groups, etc.

  36. newtrad says:

    OH Fr. Z, please don’t leave us hanging in the wasteland! We need your voice. The one thing I appreciate the most is your fairness and your treatment of the NO. I am a recent devotee of the TLM or EFRM and have many friends who are quite sceptical of it, not to mention a Bishop who barely tolerates it. I can safely recommend this website to friends and priests and know that you will not be bashing the NO. Only honestly commenting upon it. I wish the same could be said for those who leave comments. But I do gain a lot of hope from the positive comments when I read what good things are happening around the world. So, perhaps you could get a volunteer young college student to edit out the garbage posts for you and you could avoid that part of the task. Thanks for all you do. You are in our prayers.

  37. jcdrexel says:

    Meine Damen Und Herren…Madames et Messieurs…Ladies and Gentlemen…Where are your troubles now??? Forgotten? I told you so. We have no troubles here! Here, life is beautiful. The girl…………….s are beautiful. Even the orchestra is beautiful! AUF WIEDERSEHEN! A BIENTOT………..CABERET 1972…Little story now concluded…but history of the world unfinished. Lovely ladies, kind gentlemen, GO HOME…to ponder….What was true at the beginning remains true. Pain makes man think, thought makes man wise, and wisdom makes life endurabe…So, may AUGUST MOON bring gentle sleep…SAYONARA….1956- Teahouse of the August Moon…………. Fr. John Zuhlsdorf, just only allow people to comment in the future with movie lines…He’s all right Dad!!! He’s coming back to us…KEY LARGO 1948

  38. Ray Marshall says:

    Father Z:

    You might consider working with other like-minded individuals who agree with you on many of your “issues” and have a group blog.

    Then there wouldn’t be the pressure of the requirement for daily posting.

    Father Richard John Neuhaus has his Editor and others posting on the First Things blog site.

    Other Catholic group blogs include:
    The New Liturgical Movement
    The Shrine of the Holy Whapping
    Creative Minority Report
    Rorate Coeli
    Blog of the American Chesterton Society
    Southern Appeal
    Heart, Mind and Strength

    And there are lots of legal and political group blogs that are hugely popular.

  39. kathy says:

    Thank you Father. Reading your blog every day is the main reason we now attend the TLM. I’ve learned a lot!

  40. Frcd says:

    Thanks for the clarification, Father!

    My two cents: As a religious priest in an Apostolic Society, I took my vows before God with my hands in the hands of a Bishop. Beautifully, it was literally just A Bishop – one who was both free that day and who willingly and joyfully celebrates such occasions with our community.
    One of the aspects of your blog that seems to keep popping up every now and again is a disdain for particular bishops and the seeming encouragement of the same by some of your readers.

    Canon Law is pretty clear about the authority of local Pastors, Parochial Vicars and Bishops. Perhaps an updated version of our Canon Law will be released sometime later this century, but until then, bloggers, even very smart, good humored, well connected and well intended priest bloggers, should be as respectful to subsidiarity and the office of Bishop (and I submit, the persons of Bishops) as the Holy Father is himself.

    This blog, like all blogs, is the author(s)’s opinion. For you to call it “what the prayer really says…” is as full of hubris as any liberal theologian who preaches about what it means to be “truly Catholic” as they dance around the Altar or what they might call the “table.” ROFL!

    You subscribe to particular theory of translation. Formal Equivalence has its merits. It may even have ‘pride of place.’ Good people of good faith who are loyal children of the Church disagree with it being what the prayer “really says.” So what? That is not the theory in the norms of Liturgiam authenticam.

    I have prayed for your happiness and well being often this past year, especially on those days when your posts and comments seemed to reveal a self importance unbecoming a mentor and teacher. Please continue to do so.

    I hope that your recent decision to rethink the nature and purpose of your blog leads you to take a more active role in helping all Catholics have a better historical sense of how we came to believe what we believe and how we expressed, express currently, and may express in the future that faith through prayer. ?

    I hope this doesn’t earn me a sour grapes award! Thank you for “putting your name” and your zeal for souls out there! Unlike yourself, I note. But thanks anyway!

  41. A Seminarian says:

    To LCB, above:

    I think group blogs don’t work well, and would advise against – they water down the tone and tenor of posts, and are often jarring switching between voices. Let the others get their own blogs.

    That said, as you currently do, there is absolutely nothing wrong with referencing good articles by others. Or, if you want to go further, have the occasional guest-poster (but obviously vet their work).

    Without taking too many liberties, LCB makes our like Fr.Z is more a cult leader than a pastor, and then abjures you to sublimate that for the greater good, to let the ‘cult’ take over. Both propositions (cult leader or first “pastor” of a successful web-“church”) I think are balderdash: you’re a blogger, which means you are a writer. As a writer, I like your voice and your take, which is why I come back – I don’t mind a change in topic in the least – the pictures of the farm are nice, for instance, and in no way detract from the import of the blog. Now, if tone and tenor should change, I wouldn’t feel compelled to read, I would regardless continue to follow the same “project” of liturgical embetterment (towards a more perfect binding of the transcendentals into the liturgy), as would most others.

    Thus, IMO, keep this yours, write a little less if you need to, write on different topics if you want, link a little more if you want.

  42. tradteach says:

    Dear Fr. Z.,

    I found your website two years ago and a visit has become part of my daily routine. It has become a source of comfort and balm. Many of us who hold to the traditional teachings and practices of the Church have, at one time or another, felt disenfranchised or alone. Your blog has helped me feel part of a larger community, and it is a “pastoral” project in the true sense of the word. All that I can say is “THANK YOU” for being an instrument who has helped many, myself included, develop a greater love of Christ and His Church.

  43. Aelric says:

    “I have some other very important things I need to apply myself to.”

    Dare we hope in the role of Secretary at the CDWDS? :-)

    As for the blog, I concur with Richard’s comments. If a new name/focus, what about “Pope Benedict XVI’s Marshall Plan” being a uniting theme?

    As for the implementation of Summorum Pontificum being “unstoppable,” I am not so sanguine. I am reminded of Edmund Burke’s aphorism: “all that is required for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.”

  44. mao now says:

    Please tell us you are not shutting down this blog! It means so much to me! ( I know thats selfish) I dont have any money to give, But I do pray for you daily, which is all I can offer right now. I read this blog everyday, My life is pretty crappy right now, this is the one bright spot in my day, Besides the Holy sacrifice of the Mass.

  45. Blonde Bertha says:

    Perhaps you could devote your time and energy to pastoral ministry rather than fostering a cult as a celebrity priest? Given the current priest shortage, would this not be a better use of your talents? I realise you are currently a student completing your PhD but I’m not sure this activity is entirely appropriate as often the blog’s content strays from the original intention into matters of church politics and polemics. Whether it is your intention or not, some of the debate can appear at times to reinforce entrenched and reactionary views rather than fostering harmony and unity within the church.

    Personally, I also have issue with your regular requests for donations and gifts since there is no transparency in the money and items donated. Off the top off my head, you have made requests for digital cameras, various, equipment, books, funds for travel etc on top of donations for running the blog. Are these amounts declared to the IRS? Are you accounts audited to ensure they are not being misappropriated? Do you have seperate financial accounts for your blogwork? You appear to be a man of independent financial means (eg, you have a large private property of your own) so why is it necessary for the faithful to pay for your travels and these luxury items?

    Before you delete my comment and block me from future comments Father let me make clear that I am not suggesting any dishonesty as such. Just that I think if people wish to aid the church’s work then donations should be given through the church’s official channels rather than to individual priests. The practice seems to me to be most irregular. My parish priest does not post requests in the weekly newsletter asking for a digital camera or for monies to fund foreign travel. I’m not sure how your situation is different. I realise there will be a backlash of comments regarding this posting but I am just asking for some clarification and transparency. If the blog needs to be funded by donations then it should be set up properly and audited independently. Perhaps this would be an opportune time for some thought on this matter and a movement to a more regular position.
    Sincerely yours…

  46. Joe from Pittsburgh says:

    Dear Father,

    Take some time off and update a few times a week if you must, but I sincerely hope you don’t shut down. I can’t add anything to what has already been posted, but you don’t know how many lives you touch, and for the better.

  47. mao now says:

    To Blonde Bertha,
    I understand your concern, but for People like me (poor, broke, struggling in A destroyed environment ala Katrina) Father provides A clear voice of Orthodoxy. His Travels, enlighten people like me who will never have the means to visit these places. Or enjoy the things he does. Also his clear, faithful concise translations are invaluable. His Catechesis on this blog makes me better armed to defend the Faith. For me this blog, is A bright spot in an otherwise pathetic life. LOL I would gladly give some money, if I had it. God Bless Father Z!

  48. A Seminarian says:


    In charity, I should point out this reply, coming when Fr.Z is having thoughts of change, hits a discordant note. I’m sure it was meant as gentle fraternal advice, but comes off much too strongly in text – hubris is a very strong charge, and your analysis of his “self-importance” implies the capacity to see the man through the words to a degree you would probably eschew with clearer thought. Thus, it seems like kicking a guy when he is (a little) down – at least, when things aren’t so clear any more.

    This, and a couple of your other posts, seem to reveal a notable flaw of philosophy (a flaw which is shared with “the world”, as it were): you seem to claim either that there is not an objective truth which can be grasped by mere mortals, or that if there is, we cannot get there by talking about it. By calling everything in blogs ‘opinion’ (below the divided line you hopefully learned about in pre-Theology), you’ve rejected the lifework of such figures as Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, not to mention Saints such as Thomas and Bonaventure, who say the opposite. I’m sure that wasn’t your intention in what might be just a throw-away line to make your point, but its what you’ve done nonetheless: you’ve tacitly promogulated a variant of deconstruction which is (figuratively) anathema to Catholic thought, whether moral or critical.

  49. Balance. That is one of my preferred descriptions of your blog. While I see you love tradition, one thing I admire is that you have not fallen into the trap of wanting to be so traditional you end up breaking the rules. You have definitely given me a greater appreciation for obedience to the liturgical laws, even when I don’t like them. Otherwise, I am doing exactly what I hate about heterodox changes.

    But your blog has been a huge influence. Heck, the basis of my own blog is translating the prayers to provide a second source of comparisons, and hoping to hit some topics you haven’t (like prefaces).

    All I can say is that I have appreciated your blog and the things I have learned from it as much as I can (since I don’t know if I could ever fully appreciate the things you deal with which we don’t know about).

    I do encourage you to keep up a blog or website in some way if you do decide to move on from this one. You have a very balanced perspective (and a great deal of patience), which is very needed not just in the Catholic blogosphere, but on the internet as well.

    You’re in my prayers whatever you eventually decide.

  50. Father: As a solo blogger, I know exactly what you mean. No, I don’t get anywhere near the volume of readership or attention you do, but blog composition and maintenance is time-consuming no matter how many readers one has.

    For numerous reasons, I’m on summer hiatus. I am pondering other options besides solo blogging. I’m on Facebook now and I may be part of a local group starting an e-zine. I was invited to join other blogs as a team member but I’m not sure I want to do that either.

    It’s not solely a control thing or a time thing so much as I think the medium of blogging is evolving, possibly into extinction. Or, maybe I think it needs to evolve…unformed thought…

    In any event, I’ve also pondering doing podcasts but I have a terrible speaking voice (very low, scratchy, nasal). YOU on the other hand, Father, have a great voice. I see you evolving very nicely into online webcasting/podcasting only. And only when the spirit moves you to make a clip. I really enjoy your vocal content. Your readings are intriquing and fun, your rants amuse me, your interviews have been extremely interesting and informative, your photography is gorgeous.

    You have always been on the cutting edge of technology so I think you are, wisely, wondering if you need to move on to be relevant. You may also as be concerned about time vs. your vocation.

    Please know that whatever you decide to do in future, I have learned much from you.

    May God continue to bless you.

  51. John Enright says:

    For my own selfish reasons, I would like to see you continue; if not in this blog, then in another one. Whatever you decide, however, I want to express my heartfelt thanks for everything you’ve done.

  52. James M says:

    Although WDTPRS is the most edifying blog in existence…and although Father you have had an indescribably positive effect on my life as you have on countless others…I reckon if you think it is time for a break then take a total break and see where you are led. Maybe no one has guessed the possibilities?

    “Now to Him who…is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think…” (Eph 3:20).

    It would leave a lot of us as internet orphans for a while but…well God will look after us.

  53. Mike D says:

    Father, I’ve only discovered your blog within the last couple of months and I would hate to see it go away. I check your site several times a day and I would miss you terribly. I have always been a weak Catholic and I seem to find some strength every time I visit with you. All that being said, it’s ultimately up to you and only you can know what you can and need to do.

  54. Austin says:

    I find this blog a great source of encouragement, as I am sure many others do.
    It must take up considerable amounts of your time, but I believe its influence has
    been widespread and for the good. I hope you find a way forward.

  55. Jane says:

    Father I would love to see this blog continue, but I understand that you have many things to do and you must do those which are the most important. I will keep your intentions in my prayers.

  56. Francis Brennan says:

    Fr. Z.,

    Whenever you’re feeling frustrated and in the mood to close down WDTPRS because of the hassle it causes you, just pause for a moment and think of the sort of people who would just love to see you silenced and would rejoice if you threw in the towel.

    There, I thought that would stiffen your resolve!

  57. Brian2 says:

    Father Z: I think you are doing a great job at the blog; but if you feel that you need to move on, then I would fully support it (I guess that means I won’t type in the URL and cuss at the screen when Error 405 appears).

    Being an academic myself, I know the stress of a dissertation, especially as it comes to a close and the defense gets nearer. I gather from some remarks you have made that that is about where you are in the process. Maybe a hiatus until you put it to bed. And then if you go into the academy, there are more articles to write and so forth that you might find yourself a pretty busy guy.

    In any case, I think you can look back with pride on what you have done here. Thanks for everything.

  58. Everyone: I am deeply grateful for your kind comments. They mean a lot to me.

    However, I will shut down the combox now.

    Some of the suggestions here were very good and the expression of support of prayer uplifting.

    Thanks to all and don’t worry. I’m not going anywhere yet.

Comments are closed.