The Scandals at St. Gertrude the Great

West Chester, Ohio

The Full Documented Story


November 6, 2009

A Letter of Farewell from Fr. Ramolla to the Parishioners of St. Gertrude the Great Church

Please pray for Fr. Ramolla during these difficult times, that he may continue to serve those who seek the truth, with love for God and their neighbor.

Dear and beloved Faithful,

I am deeply saddened at having to leave you so suddenly. Had it been possible, I would have preferred to say farewell from the pulpit, where I could gaze one last time upon the kind faces of the people who took me, a stranger with a foreign accent, into their hearts and treated me as one of their own. The thought of not seeing you again — of never being allowed to see you again, to worship with you at the altar of Sacrifice and be your spiritual father in the confessional — makes my heart ache with a sense of loss that I have never felt before in my young life.

The pain is deeper than what I felt when I left my home in Germany to journey to the United States to study for the priesthood. I can always return to the waiting and welcoming embraces of my dear mother and loving father. But I know that if I dared to visit or minister to many of you again, you would risk your membership at the church you love so well. I love your church, too. It was more than an assignment. It was my apostolate, and you were the flock that our good and gentle Lord generously gave to my care. I almost cannot bear to imagine that our separation will be permanent — that even a short telephone call, a brief word uttered in passing on the street or shared in a home, may result in your loss of the Sacraments. Yet, so it must be. Our lives are empty without the Holy Eucharist, the healing balm of penance and divine forgiveness, and the caring guidance of the clergy.

I know not what the future holds for me. I must have every confidence, however, that our Scourged Lord and our Lady, the Mother of Mercy and Comfort of the afflicted, will grant me peace in the sad, uncertain days ahead. In your charity, if I may be so bold to ask, I beg you to offer a silent prayer for the troubled soul of a frail man who once was your priest.                      

In Jesus Christ our Lord and Mary our Queen,

Father Markus Ramolla