Monday, August 08, 2011

Everything you always wanted to know about Fr. Z but didn't know who to ask?

Ask Father.
Apparently, someone is digging for dirt on Fr. Z - a woman, Phyllis Zagano*, who writes for the National Catholic Reporter.  Father helps her out by posting an overview of his status, he titles it Priests 101 - it answers just about every question regarding him anyone ever wanted to know - or needs to know.
Everything he reveals adds up - so his enemies are clearly wasting their time. 
Prayers for Fr. Zuhlsdorf - he really is a good, faithful priest who works generously for the Church and the salvation of souls.
*Who is Phyllis Zagano?


  1. Good for him. I've always liked Fr. Z, and I only stopped reading his blog because I couldn't resist reading the comments, which were harmful to me spiritually.

    He really shows he's got nothing to be afraid of from the (bad) NCR.

  2. are you up for a Saint's patronage meme. Because tag, you're it

  3. “…Apparently someone is digging for dirt on Fr. Z - a woman…”

    Dang women.

    I was at the Benedictine Monastery this past weekend, and I was trying to have a private conversation with a Padre.

    We were whispering, and the women eavesdroppers were making comments about everything we were speaking about.

    Being as rude as I could possibly be, telling the women they needed to stop eavesdropping on the conversations of a Priest, the women said they were sorry, but they continued eavesdropping, ever more aggressively.

    This woman doing the criminal background check on Father Zulhsdorf is an agent of Satan, and should be denied communion as a public sinner.

    His Bishop is responsible for his actions, and is responsible for him, not a prideful woman.

    There should be a public outcry against this woman.

    Her actions are evil.

    The only woman in charge of Priests is the Holy Mother, who forms them in the image of her Son.

    Liberals would say I am a woman hater.

    I don’t hate women.

    Instead of keeping my wife barefoot and pregnant, I bought her a nice pair of high heels.

    (Faithful need to be careful hounding Priests; they could be Exorcists that require much privacy. What would someone do that encountered what the Priest is fighting? How do you know the Bishop hasn’t assigned him to Exorcism? Why is it anyone’s business?).


  4. This whole post and thread is bizarre. Terry: Who took you away? Bring Terry back!

    Who love's ya, hon? LOL

  5. Anonymous8:32 PM

    If I may dare to say two things:

    1) I am always amused when those with total disdain for ritual and rules try to "expose" others for supposedly not adhering to rules. In Zagano's opinion - she probably has as much right an power to confect the Eucharist as Fr. Z does - so why does she care if his papers are in order? Hypocrite.

    2) That said - I do note some gaps in Fr. Z's defense. Essentially *why* this little Italian diocese and not a US diocese. And if he paid for that farm with Paypal donations I'll eat my hat.

    I suspect that is the core of the forthcoming problematic story.

    3) Because: If everything is in order how can there be a "smear" or an embarrasment? He uses those words himself.

    4) It is not only the left that is guilty of "digging up dirt." Right-leaning Catholic blogs and internet sites and publications love to dig up dirt and "expose" others and "bring the NeoCaths and Converts down!"


  6. Cath - I'm here - I thought my post was rather supportive of Fr. Z? I'm not responsible for what Pablo writes.

    Jack - Fr. Z is a good guy - if someone from the NCR is going after him it is most likely because he always rips the NCR apart - I'm sure they are simply defending their turf - or something stupid like that. What goes around comes around.

    Troubles and tribulations are good for the soul.

  7. Puff - thanks - I'll look into it.

  8. About the only issue I have with Fr Z is that we're DESPERATELY short of priests here in Utah..if his priestly services are not needed nor required in his Italian diocese, why not get transferred elsewhere?? Spread the wealth around a bit..

    In fact--we were talking about a similiar matter concerning religious nuns and monks this weekend at our annual Secular Carmelite picnic....some Carmels (and Trappists) are overflowing with vocations and even turning some away due to lack of space, while others are barely surviving...why can't the Superior General or whatever they are called spread the new vocations around the country?? A bit of personnel mismanagment methinks...

    Pablo-I had to laugh about you buying your wife high heels :) Good man :)


    PS Shadowlands--what's happening in London???

  9. Anonymous12:40 AM

    "he really is a good, faithful priest who works generously for the Church and the salvation of souls."

    wow, I'm kind of surprised you'd say that.

    I always got the feeling you were cynical and disliked him.

  10. Anonymous1:02 AM

    But, Sara, he is working on his doctoral thesis on the figure of David, not in Rome, but rural Wisconsin? I don't know, I smell something fishy. Maybe he's a Vatican operative, maybe he is part of the Opus Dei pyramid scheme... I don't really care, I enjoy his blog (generally) and he says a nice Mass at my parish in NYC a couple times a month. Not going to worry about this. If there is something wrong, these things have a way of unfolding on their own.


    Note: Had to take my profile down as I am being cyber stalked by someone from the blogger world. Just FYI Terry, I'd say a third of your "friends" are this person trying to mock me here. Not kidding.

  11. Anonymous2:20 AM

    Good post Terry. I have never heard of Phyllis Zaggano, but serious prayers for Fr. Z.
    We ar waking up to anarchy in this country. Another night of fires ad violence and looting on the streets of London, last night the images resembled the blitz. Also trouble had spread to Liverpool and Birmingham. The devil is everywhere...

  12. Clark, I am not this person trying to mock you. Sorry to hear that.

    Are you from New York City, I assume? Seeing as Fr. Z says Mass as your parish sometimes.

    Heh, my parish is now the campus church at LSU. They designed the building with a waterfall in the baptismal font. Silence is impossible!

  13. @SMCTOD-

    High heals for your wife. I don't believe it. Next you'll be telling us you make her wear make up too.

  14. I think it's good Father Z wrote what he did. It's about time to put it all out there, in one place. What I read gave me much more sympathy for him. (But for his nasty commenters, no.)

    However, I still maintain my position that if he wants to accept donations, fine, but just take donations - stop asking for top tier food products imported from Italy and other specific, expensive technical stuff and books that cost over $100 each. If he wants to buy that stuff with his donations, again, fine, but people shouldn't know. Just take the donation money and spend it.

    Also, I still think he needs to clear something up: If he's supposed to be working on a doctoral thesis, then why does it seem he spends his entire day online with his blog? It would seem WDTPRS is by far and large his main focus - his main "ministry" or apostolate. In other words, it would appear that the blog is a major distraction from finishing that thesis.

    Again, I'm glad to have read what he wrote. It clears up much, and while no one will believe me, I agree he does not deserve to be attacked in that way. But like one or two other people have hinted here in this commbox, I still don't think he's really cleared everything up.

  15. Anonymous - I do believe he's a fine priest working generously for the faith and the salvation of souls. I also think he's a little eccentric - in a good way, fun way - but he's totally unique - and a man of many talents.

    Yep, and I do at times think he's a tad mercenary - but priests are people too. Although it amazes me that he 'punishes' the NCR by asking donations to himself. That makes no sense - and strikes me as 'eccentric'.

    His followers over react in his defense - to be sure. I'm one of his followers who doesn't

  16. Priest's Housekeeper - I left a comment for you when I was responding to Puff - but what I said is that I'm watching the London riots and praying - scary.

  17. Anonymous - I should also mention, if you don't know by now - that Fr. Z is from Mpls/StP and was closely associated with the Church of St. Agnes at one time. For some in this diocese that is 'baggage'.

    In this archdiocese we actually have very good, normal priests who get along just fine with the archbishop and are faithful to the Holy Father and the Teaching Magisterium. Most seem to be pleased with the new translations for the liturgy, a few maybe not so much. Some prefer to dress in a suit - the clerical suit as opposed to a cassock, some do not. Many are just fine with the Ordinary Form of Mass and so on and so forth.

    Over the years some folks here have been put off by the old St. Agnes culture that Fr. Z was a part of. Some folks felt there was an air of pomposity, arrogance and exclusivity about that particular rectory. many local Catholics just were not attracted to that particular 'cult atmosphere' nor were they interested in the intrique and gossip which could circulated there - and in Rome.

    I did attend St. Agness however - I just never got into the cult.

  18. Anonymous10:49 AM

    Thanks Mercury, I appreciate that. It has been a rough year dealing with it. Had to go to the police a couple times. Make sure to have your computer checked for "key logging" programs--had never heard of a key logging program until all of this.

    At any rate, God bless Fr Z.


  19. Clark - I'm sorry as well that people are stalking you and or mocking you - don't let it get to you. Prayers.

  20. Sara

    I got let out of work early, all the shops at the local town shopping (indoor centre) near me shut, due to notice of planned riots. Work said we are not allowed to talk to media either!

    I don't know when it will end, or get worse? Where are the leaders headed with this?

  21. Anonymous12:23 PM

    Terry, Thanks. It is annoying more than anything else, but I do want to make you aware, that this situation with the stalking is real, not imagined. They know what sites I go to and create a bunch of fake profiles, then post things relevant to what is being discussed, but with little hints of mockery that only I would pick up on. I'd say about 1/3 of your "friends" are this person/people. I know it sounds crazy and until Jan 2010, I wouldn't have believed it myself. Ok, not discussing this again.


  22. Clark - I believe you.

  23. Clark, to be honest though, most of the people who post here have been following this blog since before you showed up. I've been "hanging out" at Abbey Roads for almost a year now, and I just about everyone has been around for at least that long.

  24. Anonymous2:35 PM

    Mercury, I have been following this blog longer than I have been posting. Trust me on this, I know what I'm talking about here. It is too complicated to explain in a short comment piece.


  25. Anonymous2:39 PM

    And for the record, they have taken over Catholic Answers Forums. I would say about 80% (or more) of the posts are fake now. They hijacked the site last Fall and are able to go in and take over dead accounts. It is really bizarre and almost too wild to believe, but it is happening. People at CAF don't seem to care, as I have reported it and they can't figure out how it is happening.

  26. I think I've been following this blog for much too long myself.

    Where's Maria?

  27. Terry--I have decided I don't have to have an opinion on everything :)
    Clark--I am sorry for your dilemma.

  28. Terry dear - things are getting interesting here. Finally!

  29. Well, I hate the Catholic Answers forum anyway. Talk about worthless, and a source of worry and despair. Every jackass in the works can get on there and spout their ideas, backed up by Saints, of course.

    That's where I encountered the dude who claimed the best way to fight lust is to train oneself to be revolted at the female body. Also where people honestly ask questions about things like "what level of nudity is acceptable between spouses" (some idiot said "there are no direct guidelines, but I'd say only immediately before and after the marriage act and all else should be avoided) and
    whether it's lust for a woman to wear a special mighty or underwear for her husband, or whether it's okay for a sick husband to have his wide bathe him.

    So I truly hate CAF anyway - it's a hotbed for paranoia and scrupulosity, and has been a source and catalyst for many oft current troubles.

  30. It must be the gays who are hacking into all these sites. Gotta be, or people from the National Catholic Fishwrap. Ace

  31. Anonymous5:26 PM

    Well, that is how it started Sean-Jean. I made some remarks (in line with Church teaching) that some anti-Catholic gays didn't like and they've hacked/stalked me ever since.


  32. This is such a fun blog.

  33. Maria - glad you are here.

    Hi Sr. Patricia.

  34. If you take away the bravado, you are left with the following:
    1) He doesn't perform any diocesan function.
    2) He has not made himself available to the bishop in the diocese he resides.
    3) He has been on "education" leave from his diocese for at least a decade.
    4) His ministerial activities aren't under the supervision of his bishop or the bishop of the diocese where he resides.
    5) There appears to no authorization to be a traveling presbyter or to solicit funds under said ministry. He is not under a religious order and his bishop's territory ain't here.
    6) Said ministry is not incidental to his existence as a student or traveler, which means it shouldn't be treated as such.
    7) He makes representations about his finances but like many doesn't back those up. The most I can make out is that his finances aren't under the supervision of his bishop nor anyone else for that matter.

  35. Anonymous8:42 AM


    I agree with your post - but this:

    "his finances aren't under the supervision of his bishop nor anyone else for that matter."

    Diocesan priests' finances aren't "under" anyone. They have their own bank accounts and investment accounts and pay their own taxes. And mortgage on their beach condos.

    They can do what they want with whatever money they have. As more than one diocesan priest has remarked - "I'm not in a religious order. I don't take a vow of poverty."


    MZ: Why don't you register over there and enter the comment directly to Fr. Z?

  36. +JMJ+

    Now I'm really curious about something. I think it's a Western thing, or an American thing, or a Catholic in America thing. Whatever it is, it's foreign to me.

    Why is it that when one person says something critical of another person, a third will suggest that the first one say it directly to the second person?

    Is it a way of implying that the first person doesn't have the guts it takes to say it to the second person's face? (If so, does any lack of guts on the first person's part totally invalidate the criticism?)

    Or is it a way of saying we must never say anything about people when they're not "in the room" or otherwise can't respond? (If so, why is the response a big deal--especially when one is dealing with amateur blogs.)

    Or is this just a Catholic thing? Another "importation to charity"? I also read atheist blogs, which are far more vicious than Catholic blogs will ever be, and nobody ever says that someone should be informed when he is being ripped apart (or even lightly sniffed at) on a blog he might not even know about. Word will eventually get to him, and he may compose a response; but the atheosphere consensus seems to be that to bother people with kerfuffles that are not their own is indeed to bother them.

    But if it's not just a Catholic thing, could it be a religious thing? Or a thin-skinned thing? Or a morbid curiosity about what the second person is going to say in indignant response thing?

    Seriously, what is to be gained by informing the second person???

  37. +JMJ+

    Clark -- I know exactly what you mean about your stalker being a third of Terry's "friends." (LOL @ the scarequotes.) The same thing happened to me, too--on this very blog!!! Someone recently compared Abbey-roads to a bar, and I agree that it is a very seedy bar indeed, full of questionable characters.

  38. Diocesan priests receive nearly all their income from the parish. That is supervised by the parish finance council. If a priest has enough time to make money elsewhere, someone in the parish will make a big deal over the priest cheating the parish.

  39. Thanks MZ - you make some good points.

    Enbrethiliel - I think it is an American thing - sort of from the Old West - like shooting someone in the back or something. It's not the same of course - but that seems to me to be the reasoning behind it - or maybe it goes back to the duel mentality?

    That said - Fr. Z knows what goes on at this blog, MZ's blog, as well as the most remote chat room of an uber trad persuasion which criticizes him for not being trad enough. Fr. Z's informants tell him of every reference made to him, good or bad - and not infrequently he himself roams the blogosphere reviewing what people are saying now. Their IP addresses show up all the time.

    Anyway - saying something publicly about a 'public personality/figure' is pretty much the same as saying it to their face - especially when registraation is required and/or negative comments are deleted.

    That said, some people just don't play well with those who have questions.

    Your's is an excellent question Enbrethiliel.

  40. Enbre.... said
    "Someone recently compared Abbey-roads to a bar, and I agree that it is a very seedy bar indeed, full of questionable characters."

    Abbey-Roads a seedy bar? Well I never did hear such a thing, Ok we had a bit of hassle with some very drunk sorts last week but they were moved on quickly, we sent them over to the UK .....

    Er anway....I said it was like a bar, I didn't say seedy, so don't anyone imagine I meant that.

    One doesn't have to drink here of course ........


  41. +JMJ+

    Shadowlands -- Indeed, all you said was "bar." I added the "seedy" on my own and stand by it.

  42. Who the heck is Fr Z?

  43. Shadowlands and Enbrethiliel - you are both right. I've never been very posh.

  44. Enbre said-- "Indeed, all you said was "bar." I added the "seedy" on my own and stand by it."

    Terry has had lovely new windows put in at his own expense and all you can call the place is 'seedy'?

    As for standing by 'it', I take it you mean the bar, as It's your shout for the round?


  45. Oh,Shadowland! She is talking about me in the third person again. I dont get no respect in this seedy bar, lol!

  46. Oh,Shadowland! She is talking about me in the third person again. I dont get no respect in this seedy bar, lol!

  47. +JMJ+

    I recently learned a bit of Twitter etiquette (Twittiquette? LOL!) that you might find interesting, Terry.

    Book review bloggers will often "mention" an author in tweets that link to their review of a book by that author. That way, the author gets notified of the review as well, so that he can check it out.

    Now, there are some reviewers who will mention authors even in tweets that link to negative reviews. Sometimes extremely negative reviews. Authors really, really hate that.

    And it's not that they think they're the bees knees and that they should only get positive reviews. But it's just really bad manners (reeking of either ignorance or malice) for someone who thinks you suck to tap you on the shoulder so he can tell you so to your face.

    It's even worse manners for someone to tap you on the shoulder so that he can tell you that someone else thinks you suck. (Let me ask my excellent question again: What's the point???)

    * * * * *

    Corinne -- Please send Mark Shea a link to this thread so that he'll finally know which of us two he should really have blown up at: the one who said she had a problem with him on her blog, where he didn't have to read it . . . or the one who sent him a link to that blog through an e-mail account she opened for the sole purpose of making trouble for the first person, not caring how much distress it might cause Shea himself, as long as she could stand back and enjoy the fireworks. Yes, you go and do that. It's certainly a better use of your time than stalking Clark.

  48. A bar brawl is called for, eh Maria? We need livening up round here haha!

    What shall we fight about next?

  49. Look Enbre, please excuse me, I'm sitting on the bar stool opposite waiting for the Major (afternoon tea, served by Basil F.) and I couldn't help overhearing what you just said to Terry. Who is Corinne? Why is she talking about Mark Shea and also stalking Clark? Is Clark really Mark?

  50. +JMJ+

    Corinne left the comment above my first (really long) one in this thread. She has been leaving Terry anonymous comments for over a year, always writing a different name at the end of her posts. I recognise her style because she used to do it on my blog, too. I once wrote something about Mark Shea there, and she sent him a link to it because she thought it was the charitable thing to do. Or something. It caused the poor man a lot of distress.

    When Clark mentioned that she is being stalked by some of Terry's "friends," who are probably just one person using different names, it all just clicked for me.

    PS -- If Clark is really Mark, then I'm never coming back to this bar!!!

  51. Shadow: I don't think I am smart enought for all this, lol! No fights here. Can't. Just fell off my stool, again. How about a little humor...You know what my brother says about about drink, right? We drink to make people more interesting!

  52. Maria said:

    "No fights here. Can't. Just fell off my stool, again."

    I did notice you wobbling a bit earlier, but put it down to the missing leg (on the stool!). Maybe it was that last double though, you did rather knock it back a tad fast, even for my reckoning?

    How right your brother is Maria.
    I am orf to bed now. I shall pray for everyone mentioned here, in this post and comments following. God bless all in USA.

  53. When will I learn? They don't know we made up, huh? Stay safe, Shadow. I've been praying for England...

  54. Jesus heals hearts Maria. He healed ours.
    I really am going to bed now. Bye.

  55. Anonymous3:58 PM

    Clark is Clark and Mark is Mark and the stalking is no joke. The police are involved.



Please comment with charity and avoid ad hominem attacks. I exercise the right to delete comments I find inappropriate. If you use your real name there is a better chance your comment will stay put.