A Nice Stink

Dear Readers,

It’s a Saturday night, I’m at the coffee shop, and the girl at the open mic is singing “It’s the Most Wonderful Time Of the Year,” which is a lie because it’s winter, and winter is not summer. Have I ever told you how much I hate winter? And bad sopranos?

Anyway, it’s as good a time as any to tell you where I’ve been for the last couple of months.

I think it started with the Patreon account, which sounded like a good idea until I realized that I put enough pressure on myself even when nobody’s paying me to write. So I got rid of it, and immediately felt a weight lift off my shoulders.

Then I wondered if I might feel even lighter if I eased up on the pressure a bit more by not holding myself to one post per week. So I tried letting that slide, and I did feel lighter.

Then I had this beautiful idea of stopping indefinitely. I noticed that it was a beautiful idea, which implied that the act of writing had become somehow unbeautiful to me.

So I decided to stop, and felt like Peter Parker when he quits being Spiderman and just gets to go traipsing around New York, thinking about science and ignoring robberies and exhibiting a level of confidence all out of proportion to his attractiveness.

After a few weeks, I found that I really liked not writing, and liked it so much that I decided to keep doing it. I hope this doesn’t mean Alfred Molina will be coming for my girlfriend, but, you know.

I’ve been meaning to write an official goodbye, except I didn’t want to give the impression that it was Goodbye Forever, but I also didn’t mean to give the impression that it wasn’t Goodbye Forever, and I didn’t want to just dash something off in case it was forever, because if it was forever then I wouldn’t want to go out sloppily, would I?

Well, it’s probably not going to get any better than this particular sloppy post, so let it be known: I have no plans to write here anymore, but I have no plans not to, either. I just don’t know what’s next, for the blog or for anything. I’ve been reading The Seven Storey Mountain with great enthusiasm, but that’s neither here nor there.

Buuut whyyyy? This is the way I described it to Father T: When you burn incense, it smells good and makes the air thick and rises up to Heaven. Then eventually it’s gone, and it’d be silly to keep sticking coals in the censer, because there’s nothing left to burn and you’re just making scorch marks. I don’t know why there’s nothing left to burn, but there isn’t, and that’s okay with me, because I feel like I burned it real good and made a nice stink.

It’s hard to imagine a life without any kind of writing ever, so whenever the next thing comes along, I will let you know here what it is. Till then, the site won’t be disappearing, and I’ll still be available at steve[dot]gershom[at]gmail[dot]com for anything you’d like to bend my ear about. Within reason. I intend to answer your emails at least as slowly as I ever have, and just as surely.

It’s been a very great blessing to write for you, and to have had your support and encouragement and affection and prayers all this time. Thank you!

Peace & prayers,
Joseph “Steve Gershom” Prever

bye



50 Comments on “A Nice Stink”

  1. Annette says:

    Thanks for all the fish, just in case you don’t want to come back.

  2. Edgar says:

    You have to be careful about reading Merton, especially The Seven Storey Mountain. Before you know it you will be making trips to Kentucky for retreats at Gethsemani, talking to the vocations director and considering leaving all this for something greater. If you’ve never been to Gethsemani you should go…no, you need to go.

  3. Vera says:

    Noooooooooo :( Wow that makes me really sad. Well it’s your life, and you can do whatever the hell you want with it. I really appreciated your writing. Gave me happiness. Wishing you the best of luck in whatever you decide to do in the future. You’re in my prayers.

  4. anon says:

    Joseph,
    You’re writing has touched me and honestly changed my whole outlook. This is something I would like to thank you for on a number of levels.
    For one, I have (especially recently) been struggling with the Church’s views on homosexuality…and if it weren’t for you and your witness…and especially the explanations you made….I don’t know what I would think.
    But I don’t even think that that is the most important thing you have helped me with. I realized that we aren’t all that different. Me, you, the transgender person, the priest, the old woman, the teenage boy. Maybe that is too simple of a point, but I think it’s important. We are all here. We all struggle with our sexuality in one way or another….and anyone who doesn’t is lying!
    I’m a straight women in her 20’s. I seem clean cut and “perfect” on the outside, and I know that people look up to me as someone that they think is upright, pure, etc. Sometimes I think life would just be easier if I told some of these people that I have had major issues with pornography, masturbation, and lusting after people who are trying to love me.
    Why do we struggle with these things? I don’t know that I will ever find the answer, but I know that it is important to keep trying.
    I never thought that I would be able to relate to a 30 something gay dude, but I can. Reading your stuff makes me feel a tad less of a fuck up, because maybe we are both in this together, along with probably all of humanity.
    If someone as smart, funny, and respectable as you has to deal with all this stuff, then maybe it doesn’t make me less of a valuable human being for dealing with it myself.
    So yea, you made me look at others in a much more forgiving light. I feel more human after reading your blog. I feel more okay with myself.
    You should be proud as hell for what you’ve done. Funny how the shit we go through brings people together. You should know that your struggle, your suffering, your loneliness thus far has had immense value because of this. I have a feeling that you have touched more people than you know, and in a deeper way too. And the cool thing is that it doesn’t stop just because you aren’t going to write for a while. The internet is eternal!

    I really wish all the best for you, and I hope that I will come across some of your writing in the future.
    Cheers-

    1. Angela says:

      Amen. Thank you for all what you said to Steve, it’s what I needed to write. But I am late 20s and a little different issues.. God bless you all and Good luck to Steve on his next journey to were HE wants Steve to me. Thank you for your insight. Have a blessed Advent, Merry Christmas and a awesome rest of your life!

  5. Karol's says:

    Sometimes, you need to leave something, in order for there to be room, and time, for what God needs you to be doing next.

  6. Father Maurer says:

    You’re going to be missed! Thank you for sharing yourself & your thoughts here on this blog. It’s been a great gift! . I’m sure something else will come along, but no pressure in the meantime. God bless you as you enjoy this time of not-writing!

  7. Lisa says:

    I am a 40+ married mom of two little girls. I’ve been reading and loving your blog for a couple of years, and didn’t realize until recently that you live in the next town over (I’m in Shrewsbury). There is something in your musings for everyone. I have always accepted the church’s teachings on sexuality, but I think I have learned a lot from you, especially about the meaning and purpose of our sexuality in general. Thank you for that. If I ever see you, I’m going to run over and give you a hug! You won’t know what hit you! I am always looking for you on that rare occasion when I am sitting in a hip coffee shop. :)

  8. Tina says:

    It’s been a pleasure. Thanks for sharing and being an example of a life truly lived.

  9. Norm says:

    I’d like to echo what anon said, but she said it better than I ever could. So I’ll just say thanks, Steve, I’ve enjoyed your posts.

    And is it just me, or does it look like you’re providing a benediction for the Internet in your “so long for now” photo there? I do know your blog has been a blessing to me at times.

  10. Betsy says:

    Goodbye sweet Steve! You are a light in the wilderness that so many of my friends travel in. Thank you for being an example of honesty in the glimpse of your life that you have given us – you’re nopt just an example for Catholics with SSA, but for all of us that struggle in any way in our lives and faith. I am honored to have been able to read your words and pray for you. Keep on rockin’ like a rockin’ thing that is constantly sent to “rock!”

  11. Kelly says:

    Thank you for your honesty and courage to fight the good fight.

    I am a 60yearold mom of three,daughter in her twenties and two sons in there thirties. I have been reading your blog since 2010 and I have spread the word about your blog to family and friends.
    Maybe you could go on EWTN or Relevent Radio.

    I will keep you in my prayers.
    May God bless you much Mr. Joseph Prever.

    Sincerely,
    Kelly in Minnesota

  12. Alex says:

    Joey you are the bestest. I mean that. High hopes and expectations, and lots of prayers and a mental hug, for you in whatever you get up to now. Oh, and keep that gmail inbox open, I’ll be (slowly but surely) writing!

  13. Gary Earl says:

    I have enjoyed your posts a lot, Steve (or Joseph). You are a brave and honest man. Let the Lord lead you. Perhaps a retreat at Gethsemani would be just the ticket. God speaks there. The monks would enjoy getting to know you and your struggles and insights. It is a prayerful place. Don’t expect it to be perfect- there are human there after all. I’m in my 60s and have indulged in annual retreats since 1980. You might discover what your next step is. Let God speak to you. And get some rest.

  14. Alexis says:

    I had wondered where you’d gone … sorry to see you go. Your blog has given me much food for thought, although I’m a straight woman. Thanks and God bless.

  15. Lori says:

    I’ve enjoyed this blog and want to thank you for your honesty, and also for recommending the book Poustinia.

    I will check back now ‘n then and hope to find that sometimes, you just feel like writing. Best of luck to you and may God bless you!

    In His love,
    Lori

  16. Jamie says:

    You’ll be missed… but isn’t that whole release of the self-imposed weight on your shoulders the BEST? I just got rid of one myself. I’ve probably loaded on a few more in the meantime, but, well, one thing at a time. I’ve really appreciated your take on all the things, and I’m glad I got to meet you in real life a few weeks ago! :) Blessings!

  17. Mateus Silva says:

    Dear Joseph,
    Thank you for everything!
    Mateus

  18. Anne says:

    I’m sad about this but that’s not your problem. ; ) You didn’t even know we were friends, hah.

    Seriously though I have learned so much from you and am grateful that you were brave enough to share your heart on these matters. I am better because of what you’ve written. You have a gift for writing. Thank you thank you! And thanks also for inspiring me to be a better Christian by your faithfulness to the Church. God bless you in your future endeavors.

    1. Emma says:

      Couldn’t have said it better than Anne- Blessings Joseph slash Steve!

  19. Alicia says:

    Hi!
    I’ve never commented before, but I’ve been reading your blog since forever (like since the end of 2011, I think). Just thought I’d let you know that I’ve really enjoyed your writing and learned so much from you. I wish you success with your future endeavors! You’re awesome! Peace and prayers to you too!!

  20. David says:

    Gaff: You’ve done a man’s job, sir. I guess you’re through, huh?
    Deckard: Finished.

  21. Josh W says:

    While I haven’t commented much, I did keep an eye on your blog for the past couple of years. I’ll chime in with the rest in saying that it was good stuff, and that I wish you well in whatever comes next.

  22. Matt P. says:

    Well, the good news is that I don’t have to keep checking the blog at lunchtime only to be disappointed by database errors and non-posts. And I really appreciate the closure! But I’m disappointed, not in a “you need to keep writing so that I’m disappointed” way, but just in a “I’ve really appreciated your thoughts and your witness and am sad to see it dry up” kind of way.

    God bless you!

  23. Jono Newton says:

    Thanks for all you’ve written, Joey. I haven’t followed that closely, but have really appreciated what I’ve read, and it makes me happy to know you’re out there doing your thing and thinking your thoughts. I hope you do continue to occasionally write them down. See you sometime soon I hope,

    Jono

  24. ANA says:

    Dear Steve,

    Thank you for all your writings! May God bless and protect you! And if someday, you decide to write again, please blast out an email to let us know.

  25. Lydia says:

    An excellent stink, if I may say so.
    Your writing has been a blessing. Thank you so much for all you’ve shared.

  26. Mark says:

    Thank you for your work and witness, man! You are an inspiring example for all of us. Please pray for me as I continue to pray for you!

  27. Miriam says:

    Thank you dear Mr. Prever. It was great reading from you. I will miss you

  28. HappyCatholic says:

    Goodbye Steve! My prayers are with you always! God bless you for all the good you’ve done and may He always bless you for as long as you live! Pax et bonum!

  29. S. says:

    I want to release several paragraphs of emotional vomit into this comment box, but, nah. Thanks for the words, Joseph. You will remain in my prayers.

  30. Rosemary says:

    Oh!

    I’ll miss you a LOT.

    I’ve learned and laughed so much here.

  31. Cordelia says:

    You write a touching and hilarious good-bye. Thanks for everything!

  32. Erika says:

    Thanks for writing. I hope you find the next step of God’s calling for you, soon!

  33. Jett says:

    I don’t know if I totally understand the Church’s teachings… But what I do know is that sex and sexuality–for better or for worse– is a pretty big deal. It doesnt seem fair that something so unchosen, often unruly, and rarely pure should be laced with so much emotion and meaning. Thanks for being bold enough to take a topic that desperately needs to be discussed with clarity, charity, and authenticity– and give it humanity. It is not our spotless gowns that inspire, it is our scars, our wounds, and our pain that touchs a soul and gives it a safe place to rest.

  34. Jake says:

    Your blog has given me hope and courage… and helped me begin my own. Thank you, sir. And God Bless.

  35. Roy says:

    It is time to let the next set of voices add color to the the tapestry you have helped weave.

    Roy

    1. They are doing a great job of it over at spiritualfriendship.org.

  36. Scott says:

    Steve,
    Im obviously only a casual reader since Im just seeing this post now, late in the evening on Jan 30th, but damn! I knew I should have given to that Patreon account when I first saw it! I feel partly responsible. An audience member that gained a lot, but gave nothing in return.

    Look,.. I get the whole reality of creative souls needing a break, or writers block or what ever the case may be. There is no doubt you have given a great deal that remains accessible, so Im not trying to lay a guilt trip here. That said, let there be no doubt about it Peter Parker, there are Alfred Molinas out there! You are one of the people stopping the falling debris from crushing the innocent (or ignorant) civilians below. Don’t go wondering the streets too long and keep that spidey suite right handy!

  37. Karen Pomes says:

    Im really late to the game here…looks like the blog has gone inactive. I was thinking about attending the conference in August but im neither an educator, religious, involved in parish ministry etc.

    Simply a practicing Catholic who loves her faith AND like you is called to chastity after my Catholic husband left me in 2008 to pursue worldly ends. However, I feel that your cross of SSA is a heavy one to bear, but all the more awe inspiring becuz through it is your own path to sainthood. Love and prayers, Karen

  38. kevim says:

    Thanks Joseph! I’m smiling and happy ! God bless you. Kevin. XXOO I am off to the confessional . I hope to always have your love cause man you got mine.

    1. kevim says:

      Just finished reading some more of your articles and wow you are a very interesting man ..good writing Joseph. I realize you stopped in 2014 november so its been awhile . I am still trying to incorporate my SSA into healthy relationships with men and I am pretty happy with this attempt. I have some really good catholic friends and my twin brother is fabulous with all his knowledge of St Thomas Aquainas , church Fathers , etc… Anyway I realize I came on strong but I have felt so lifeless for so long that when I read your blog and saw your picture I felt love in my heart again and it was energizing to say the least. It feels really good to have found you and I know i’m supposed to give all that love to Jesus our Lord so tell me to hit the road and I will . Kevin

      1. Don’t hit the road, on the contrary, thanks for stopping by, and please feel free to drop me a line if you like. JP

  39. kevim says:

    Hey Joey, thanks so much for the affirmatiion. I’m leaving today for a week to see my beautiful mother on the east coast of Canada so although I do want to stay in touch I probably wont be able to write to you until I return. I want to keep you in my heart so I am going to pray for you for protection from St Michael and our guardian angels. God bless and keep you Joey ! Looking forward to hearing from you . Kevin

    PS Is this the only place I can write to you ?

    1. No, feel free to drop me a line at steve[dot]gershom[at]gmail[dot]com.

  40. kevim says:

    Well Joey, I don’t know if you are just busy or if Facebook and Gmail are hiding your messages again but I haven’t heard back from you so I guess i will have to give you my gmail account and see what happens …kadson39@gmail.com

    1. Nope, just busy, I’m afraid! I promise I’ll respond when I’m able.

  41. Kelly says:

    Thank you for your responses to everyone’s comments.
    Your a good man Joey Prever.

    Kelly

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