I have tonight been overwhelmed by the e-mail sent to me.

So many people have promised prayers…

…or asked for them.

You have so many questions.

People are so hungry.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. I know a bishop here in France who immediately began a program of sending seminarians (so many!) and priests to get advanced degrees in Rome. It’s so sad that in so many places there seems to have been a policy of dumbing down the clergy, which is very convenient for those who need them to be dumbed-down.

    The tide is turning. We have hope. The Lord is good.

  2. IvoDeNorthfield says:

    I’m guessing that the post-election lull in wdtprs blog traffic has ended.

  3. fmhmatrix says:

    Fr Z
    Over the past few months, since I discovered “wdtprs”, I have come to rely on your blog for liturgical guidance, spiritual inspiration and downright common sense. Keep up the good work!
    Fr M (a British newcomer to the EF)

  4. I have said all along that the internet is a cyberparish.

    Thanks to every solid priest who blogs because yes, the people are starved for truth they are not getting from their own pulpit.

    I’m over 40 years old and had never heard a priest say the word “abortion”, let alone talk about confession, virtue building, sin, God’s justice, the four last things, sacrifice, mortification, etc.

    In other words, the Cross has been largely missing.

    Perspective from priests who are not disoriented with loop-hole, namby-pamby theology are needed out here in the cyber-parish.

  5. Andy Brandt says:

    Right. We are hungry. And we also need pastoral advice, rooted in Magistrium and Tradition on things that are related to current events and current technology and choices we have to make in our lives. Like my conscience problem with buying Apple products after their financial and verbal support for gay marriage in California. This is not a theoretical problem, but something that bugs me but no priest was able to help me on it, since they for the most part don’t know about it over here.

  6. Maureen says:

    To be fair, it’s a lot easier to get some information across in pixels or print rather than in a homily or talking face to face. In the past, it was more common for orthodox priests and laypeople to have all sorts of print outlets to talk to their parish or Catholics as a whole. The rise of large circulation magazines and newspapers for Catholics seems to have killed off a lot of smaller local publications. A lot of Catholic publishing houses have also died over the last forty or fifty years for various reasons.

  7. ckdexterhaven says:

    Diane is so right. I’m the same. I would be thrilled if my priest talked about the Works of Mercy. I’m ashamed to admit this, but I hadn’t even heard of those until I was 35. :( She’s right, we’re searching for the Truth out here in our Cyber parish. But, you know, we’re still out here praying for our Pope, our Church, our Country.

  8. joy says:

    Catholic Distance University offers online seminars throughout the year. They have the Ex Corde Ecclesia statement right on their homepage. I’m taking credit courses from them now, but they also have non-credit/catechetical ones, and are in line with the Magisterium. Check it out at

  9. Dave says:

    Father Z, many thanks for all that you do. Your blog has certainly helped me keep my sanity despite the craziness of my local parish.

    Most readers here probably already know about this, but here’s another great website with hundreds of solidly orthodox Catholic sermons, updated weekly:

  10. skeeton says:

    Diane at Te Deum,
    Ten days ago, the parochial vicar at my parish (south of Nashville) gave a rip-roaring homily about the need for conversion on two critical issues: Abortion and Divorce. Now, I have been a Catholic for almost eight years, and that was the very FIRST time that I had heard either issue addressed from the ambo. And let me tell you, the homily really blew my hair back! There was a nervous energy during the rest of the liturgy – I thought applause would erupt at any moment. People were beaming in the glow of truth preached and revealed. After Mass, I went up to this very holy Indian priest and told him how wonderful it was to be fed like that during Mass. Instead of making him happy, my comment seemed to erase slowly the smile from his face as he realized, yet again, the depth of spiritual poverty among Americans – and, yes, even among American Catholics. But have hope – the tide is turning! Let’s thank God that foreign priests are willing to come to our shores and to help us regain our bearings.

  11. TNCath says:

    Dear Father,

    Many of us are hungry, indeed, because we are being starved liturgically and spiritually in our home churches and dioceses. Websites such as yours, The New Liturgical Movement, Catholic World News, and others are truly the only places we can go for spiritual nourishment and hope. Thank you for all you do!

  12. Kathy says:

    Yes, thank you, Father. I found this blog after learning a new archbishop was coming to our archdiocese a couple of weeks ago. About five days before the announcement was made, I had realized that attending Mass was the most stressful part of my week. No other diocese I’ve lived or visited has been like this.
    In January, 2003, I was so discouraged I felt as if I had to do something positive, so I wrote to Bishop John D’Arcy of the Fort Wayne-South Bend diocese to tell him how much I appreciated the fact that no matter what parish we attended while visiting family there, we always knew we would find a reverent Mass. He sent me the kindest reply.
    I appreciate what you do as well.

  13. Don M says:

    God Bless you Father and Thank You !!

  14. Rob says:

    If you feel you’re not making your Sunday obligation at your local parish because Sr. Nancy gets up and gives the homily, at least you can count on Fr. Z’s blog to give you the teaching you otherwise would not be receiving from the alb-wearing nun at the pulpit.

    Excellent work, keep it up!

  15. Jenny says:


    Do you attend St. Catherine?

  16. Mary in CO says:

    Overwhelming, yes. But exciting! Let’s keep in prayer Father Z and all priests who minister to us and teach us. Thank you for faithful and courageous priests and religious, Lord. We need them so much!

  17. Ed says:

    Fr. Z – “People are so hungry.”

    Hang in there, Father. Perhaps lean more towards the positive teaching available to us now, like from Pope Benedict, and less toward controversial “news.”

    The hunger we feel is not a recent thing; in reading Pope Benedict XVI’s “The Fathers,” I’m so often taken by surprise at the dissent and mayhem in the early Church. It really isn’t a new development, but seems to have been part of the Church all along. Heresies, problems with self-aggrandizing clerics, politics, exile…

    Some of the Fathers, like St. Basil, took an “in the trenches” position, insisting on staying with Christ’s direct Word to us, especially in terms of service to one another, especially toward the poor, the naked, the lost. Some of the Fathers, like St. Augustine, lived to see their lifelong work apparently destroyed by barbarians.

    St. John Chrysostom, if I understand the pope on this, seems to have been martyred by the Church itself, in a controversy between the See of Alexandria and the See of Constantinople…

    Towards positive food, consider, for example, “Can you tell the difference” which calls forth a lot of negative critique– perhaps appropriately so, about the new church buildings. This is a good starting point, as a “cautionary,” but some posters included references and links to what we’d rather see–the older churches, and new churches built on traditional patterns.

    The latter entries feed my hunger for Truth. And access to that quality of food is why I read your blog; why it reamins a strong support for me.

    I would like to hear about all the TLM’s being offered for those whose faith was so rocked by Vatican II misimplementations. Some of those people haven’t yet got back. Some of them died waiting for the liturgical fallout to settle, so they could have their church back.

    Yes, we’re still hungry. Oremus.

  18. Ed Casey says:

    You are so right about this. The Church is general is hungry. But I must tell you, there’s an important aspect of this that is very important: Men are hungry. We are hungry for manly examples of holiness. Our church has been hijacked in the past many years, and endured a culture and society that has attacked the very meaning of what it means to be a man. Men no longer know what honor, integrity and faith mean. We don’t know how to lead our loved ones closer to the Lord. Men need to have the positive message that they have what it takes and that the Lord recognizes in each man, his good and faithful servant, in whom He is well pleased.

    Catholic Men have begun gathering in Dioceses all around the country (and probably the world) to reclaim their rightful place, to evangelize, encourage and strengthen each other to live the call to be powerful sons of God and to lead their families closer to the Lord. Whether at home, work or in the public square each man is called to respond to the authentic image of masculinity found in Christ Jesus and examples such as St. Joseph, patron of husbands and fathers. This is something that is gaining stream right now and will be a powerful witness in coming months and years.

  19. David Andrew says:

    Spiritual hunger is very real, let me tell you! And what is so sad is that even in the midst of truly holy and devout men stepping forward and saying “yes” to God’s call, there are just as many priests who still don’t get that the people want bread, not stones. My hunger comes from knowing that there are much more profound truths that could be expounded from the pulpit and there is deeper mystery to be encountered in the liturgy than is being made manifest by priests who, though well-intentioned, are worried more about the things of the world than the welfare of the immortal souls of the faithful in the pews. If this were not so, we would be hearing solid preaching on the last things, the importance of interior disposition and proper reception of the various sacraments of the Church.

    I would love nothing more than to express to the clergy and lay leadership of the parish where I work that as things continue to appear dark and grim, the Church has a duty to offer a “hope” that is more powerful than our new president can even imagine. Unfortunatly, they’re more worried about keeping people “happy” with programs than truly showing them the joyful promises of Christ as experienced in the reverently-celebrated liturgies of the Church and the time-honored devotional practices of our tradition.

    We must do all we can to avoid sea-sickness while the Barque of Peter rides this storm!

  20. Diane says:

    You know you are getting fed well when you hear priests and bishops refer often to the fathers and doctors of the Church, and to Church documents.

    There is too much “spirit of [fill in the blank] out there. All fluff, little truth, and even perversions of the truth.

    I emailed the Archdiocese of Detroit asking if they would let Archbishop Vigneron know that we would like podcasts of his weekly homilies. He really talked Thomas Aquinas up at his installation Mass (you can go to to hear it and read it).

    Hungry? Ask bishops like these to start podcasting their homilies. Those that are getting scraps at the dinner table will feel satisfied. By all means, flood the AOD with email for Vigneron’s podcasted homilies:

  21. irishgirl says:

    Thank you Fr. Z-and all the good and faithful priests that are blogging out there on the Net-for ‘feeding” us in these times of spiritual starvation!

    I wish there were priests like you here in the ‘wilderness’ of Upstate NY. All we have here are liberals. The few good priests we had either transferred out to other dioceses or put in assignments out in the boonies. I go to a Latin Mass chapel because I want reverence and silence!

    Please Papa Benedict-send a new shepherd to Syracuse!

  22. Ohio Annie says:

    I am with Ed on this. There is far too much negativity everywhere. This blog is at it’s best when it is showing good examples and not mocking.

  23. skeeton says:

    No, it’s St. Philip’s in Franklin. It might look like a Baptist Church on the outside, but good things are happening on the inside. Our new pastor is taking a brick-by-brick approach – where have I heard that before? – and he lays the Truth on the line in an authoritative way for all to see. The parochial vicar is also a very holy man. There seems to be a lot of nervous energy in pews on Sunday, with most wondering what surprise we will (re)discover next.

  24. Jenny says:


    I’m at the new church in Spring Hill with your former pastor. Things are still very unsettled so it is hard to get a feel for how things will end up.

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