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A Beautiful Catholic Perspective on Suffering from Elizabeth Leseur

Crucifix sufferingReprinted from The Secret Diary of Elizabeth Leseur:

“I believe that suffering was accorded by God to man with a great intention of love and mercy.

I believe that Jesus Christ has transformed and sanctified suffering and made it almost divine.

I believe that suffering is the great instrument of redemption and sanctification for the soul.

I believe that suffering is fruitful, as much as and sometimes more than our words and deeds, and that the hours of Christ’s Passion did more for us and were more powerful with the Father than even His years of preaching and earthly activity.

I believe that there is coursing through souls — those on earth, those in Purgatory, and those who have attained to true life — a great unending stream made up of the suffering, merits, and love of all these souls, and that our least sorrow, our faintest efforts can by divine action reach certain souls, whether near or far, and bring them light, peace, and holiness.

I believe that in eternity we shall find again the beloved ones who have known and loved the Cross, and that their sufferings and our own will be lost in the infinity of divine Love and the joy of final reunion.

I believe that God is love, and that suffering, in His hand, is the means used by His love to transform and save us.

I believe in the Communion of Saints, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.”


Quote for Thought on Handling Hostility

This quote comes from one of my favorite books, “The Secret Diary of Elizabeth Leseur,” a very holy woman who lived with an unbelieving husband who was not only not supportive of her Catholic religion but at times ridiculed it. She offered up her suffering in that regard for the benefit of his soul, and after her death, he converted and became a Catholic priest!!

Here is her thought on handling such hostility, which I think many of us have come upon at some point or another from someone in our lives or, like me this summer, from some man at the park while I was reading this very book!

“There is little suffering that can compare with this: to love, and to be repaid with hatred or at least hostility; to dream of doing good for someone, of giving part of oneself, and to find that this person does not appreciate you, judges you unfairly, and misunderstands everything about you. What should one do then? Not be unjust in return; remember that the Master suffered misunderstanding and contempt; and without reproaches or sorrowful thoughts of self, continue to speak, act, and love, not to gain the affection denied us, but in the higher and supernatural thought of charity.”