A note from a priest about the “gloom spreaders”

From a priest reader.  My emphases and comments:

Reverend and Dear Father Zuhlsdorf,

Firstly, thank you for your blog, which I enjoy reading very much.  I first became aware of it through a search for some or other phrase in the 1970 MR, and I was quite hooked from the moment I cyberstumbled upon it.  Good show.

Secondly, I appreciated very much your citation recently of the communication of the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer (the erstwhile Transalpine Redemptorists).  Your simple statement that there are those who "try to spread the gloom" hit dead home with me.

You see, I am a member of a clerical community which is in the process of regularization with the Holy See.  As to the specifics of this process, I have precisely no insight as it is being attended to by my superior and the proper authorities.  (Having had my fill of bureaucracy in this lifetime, I am quite happy to be out of that particular loop for the time being).

I do, however, interject myself to beg most earnestly your prayers for us (and to ask your readers to pray, also).  Be assured that you remain in my own prayers every day.

Part of the problem of the gloomspreaders, in my opinion, is that they seem to think that such regularization is somehow going to "save the Church" in the twinkling of an eye.  Well, indeed.

All I can say is that last week I had to give the last sacraments to a seventeen year old girl who had been shot in the head in a drive-by shooting for no discernible reason.  I had to comfort as best I could her mother and family when her life signs had finally ceased.

I can not save the Church.  I can, if I allow Christ, the High Priest, to work through the nothing that I am, who am yet called to be His priest, exercise in some small way the power of His grace and His sacrifice in the soul of another person.  That’s all[Amen and Amen.]

So your words were comforting.  Sometimes, just pointing out the obvious shows how absurd it really is.  Let the gloomspreaders glower.  I will just continue to be a priest.

(Insert obligatory closure, mutatis mutandis, to semi-humorous effect:) Inclining with a minima minimarum to the sacred black, I remain,

A nice note.

Would you in your kindness stop, right now, and say a St. Michael prayer for these men and this priest in particular?

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in proelio, contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium. Imperet illi Deus, supplices deprecamur: tuque, Princeps militiae caelestis, Satanam aliosque spiritus malignos, qui ad perditionem animarum pervagantur in mundo, divina virtute, in infernum detrude. Amen.

  2. Chris says:


    That’s a good priest. I hope he finds full communion with Rome — when the time is right.

  3. joamy says:

    Prayers said, also a thank you!!!

  4. David says:

    Prayer support is on the way. Hang in there.

  5. John Enright says:

    My prayers go out for him; I hope and pray that his journey to Rome bodes well.

    That being said, I really like the word “cyberstumbled” because it is SO absolutely descriptive of the internet!

  6. cedomaiori says:

    It seems that your dear priest-reader knows his place in the order of Creation. The world already has a Savior, and he isn’t it. Prayers for him.

  7. steve says:

    none, and a prayer to St. Gertrude the Great thrown in too for the holy souls this month.

  8. John Womack says:

    Prayers and much gratitude!

  9. Jenny says:

    Done, with much gratitude for this and all of our beloved priests.

  10. Tito Edwards says:

    I don’t know why, but that letter touched me. His humility and piousness showed through it.


  11. ekafant says:

    Dones.Yes, no gloominess. I have met too many people, and I must include myself, who are glooomy, given the situation in the Church. However we must ALWAYS remember that it is God’s Church, and he is in control. Over the last year, the explosion of TLM everywhere would have been unthinkable even 2 years ago. Seminarians that I have met, going to diocesan seminaries especially, give me the greatest hope. The love they have for the Mass and their zeal to be good priests is very much an inspiration.

  12. Brandon says:

    Done. Father(s), this letter has made a number of us cry for some reason undiscernible past sorrow and yet joy.

    Thank you for touching us…

  13. Simon says:

    Done (by one of your Anglican readers)

  14. Ellen says:

    Of course – I need no excuse to say the St. Michael prayer (one of my favorites)

  15. josephus muris saliensis says:


    As an interesting footnote, being one of those people who like a prompt when saying even familiar prayers, I thought to avoid moving (opm!), I’d google it. I found this on a website:

    “On Sunday April 24th 1994, Pope John Paul II recommended this prayer be used by all Catholics as a prayer for the Church.”

    Thus, we are also united to the fervent spirit of the universal Church today, not just ‘some traditionalist minority’, as we recite these words.

  16. Raphaela says:

    Done. Father Unnamed, your letter touched my heart. I will pray that your community’s regularisation goes swiftly and smoothly.

  17. Susan G says:

    Done. God bless ’em all.

  18. Joe says:

    Done – with gratitude for the humility of this unknown priest and his community. May their prayers be answered soon.

  19. rosie says:

    Priests are sacrificed for and prayed for daily in this house.

  20. Al says:

    It was a pleasure to pray for him.

  21. Trevor says:

    Prayers, Father.

  22. Calleva says:


    He sounds like a wonderful priest and one can only welcome him and his community home. I’m sure they will be a great gift to the Church. God bless!

  23. jarhead462 says:


    Semper Fi!

  24. Thomas says:

    Done. How can we be gloomy with priests such as these in God’s church?

  25. Melody says:

    May God bless this priest and his order.

    It’s so easy to get caught up in indignation and ‘gloominess’ and forget that priests need prayers.

  26. Matt of South Kent says:


    It is at the darkest of times, when the Church is at Her brightest.

  27. David Martin says:


  28. John Michael says:

    What a humble soul. Thank you for posting Father.

    St. Catherine of Alexandria, pray for us.

  29. MPod says:

    Done. God help his Church on earth. Even so, Lord Jesus, quickly come!

  30. Mark G. says:


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