Thursday, August 18, 2011

Suffering: The Best Gift by St Gemma Galgani

The previous beautiful post by Sue Elvis regarding being the mother of Thomas reminded me of this quote from St Gemma Galgani:
Learning how to sacrifice and suffer out of love for God

Gemma writes "This evening at last, after six days of absence of Jesus, since it was Thursday, I began my hour of prayer, thinking of Jesus on the Cross. Then it hap­pened. I found myself with Him suffering and I felt a great desire to suffer and asked Jesus to give me this grace"

Another time she writes- "Will I ever really love Jesus? I have a strong desire to love Him, yes, I would like to languish with love for Him, but ... Many times I have asked Jesus to teach me the true way to love Him and Jesus seems to show His open wounds to me and He says to me: "Look, my daughter, see how much I have suffered. See this cross, these nails, these thorns? They are all the work of love. Look at me and learn how to love." Sometimes He says to me: "Look, my daughter, the best gift that I can give to a soul that is very dear to me is to send it suffering."


  1. Therese, my name at the top of this post caught my eye. Thank you!

    Yes, when I began along that long journey of suffering, I used to ask God: Why? Why me? What have I done so wrong? I'd tried always to be faithful to my prayers and live my life well. I felt that God had rejected me. I wasn't good enough.

    Later I came to realise just what you have written: "the best gift that I can give to a soul that is very dear to me is to send it suffering." Suffering is not a punishment at all. It is not easy (in fact it is so very difficult), it is not something I could ask for, but it is a real blessing. It was given with love and I came to accept it (with God's help) because of love.

    Gemma Galgani is the patron saint of one of my daughters. I really should read more about her.

    Thank you for this post and may God bless you.

  2. This young saint never ceases to amaze me with her humility and love for Christ. She is a wonderful example of how to love God and others through and with our suffering.

  3. I believe it was Padre Pio who added that earthly suffering is a blessed gift/opportunity to serve our Purgatory NOW. I know that this message was sent SO clearly to my heart in my father's last agony during his time in Hospice. (I wrote a post about this message recently) Mothers like Sue, and Saints like Gemma, and survivors like our own dear Colleen Spiro...these precious souls have been nailed to the Cross with Our Lord and though it seems unfathomable (and perhaps even unfair) at the time...if one can lay that burden at His Feet...the reward and blessing and LOVE that comes to them in the end is beyond all comprehension. Also, some will not be asked to suffer "unspeakably" so as these women have done...and yet...each cross that comes to us during our daily lives is also a gift...if we can but accept and embrace these crosses for LOVE OF CHRIST. God takes away our pain and turns our sorrows into JOY and BLESSING.

  4. These words of Jesus to St. Gemma are so comforting. I titled my blog "Suffering with Joy" because it is the disposition I strive for every day. Suffering is not a sign of God's abandonment of a person but of His love and attention to perfecting us.