Offer up some one elses sufferings

I have been in a discussion with another Catholic about suffering. I seem to recall when reading “The Life and Revelations of St Gertrude” that there was mention of the ability for one person to offer up the sufferings of another person for the good of that other person’s soul. My friend says that isn’t possible - you can only offer up your own sufferings for that other person. He said that private revelation even by a Saint doesn’t need to be believed.

Any thoughts out there in Catholicland. I would appreciate any official Church pronouncements that validate the ability to offer up the sufferings of another person for their eternal wellbeing.


Well I’m not sure about any official church teaching. But I know of another revelation which forms a second morning offering.

DEAR LORD, I adore Thy Sacred Heart, which I desire to enter with acts of love, praise, adoration, and thanksgiving. I offer Thee my own heart as I sigh to Thee from its very depths, asking that Thou will worketh through me in all that I do this day; thus may I draw Thee closer to me than Thou wert before. I offer Thee all the crosses and sufferings of the world, in union with Thy life on earth, in expiation for sins. Please join my every action and heartbeat to the pulsations of Thy Heart. I unite all my works of this day to those labors Thou didst perform while Thou wert on earth, bathing them in Thy Precious Blood, and I offer them to the Heavenly Father so that many souls may be saved. Amen.
This prayer is based on the following revelations:

“It is not merely by praying that souls are saved, but through the actions of even the most ordinary lives lived for God . . . Offer Me everything united to My life on earth.
. . . Offer Me all the crosses of the world. There are so many, and few think of offering them to Me in expiation for sins . . .”

-------Our Lord to Gabrielle Bossis [1874-1950]

Found here :

I believe it. Why would God want anything to go to waste? You can also pray that more may offer their sufferings to God and pray more. Nothing is impossible to him. Especially if it is done for right reasons.

I don’t see why we can’t do it. With God all things are possible.

We can do penance for others. And many (all?) priests routinely do penance for the sins of people who come to confession.

I’ll have to think about it more. I’ve run across some verses in Scripture that I seem to remember had some bearing on the sharing/connectedness.

We are one Body in Christ, I suppose.

I had a priest once tell me…when I mentioned that some days I have nothing to offer up to the Lord…that I did everything poorly, full of blemishes, full of resistance, and self pity.

And he smiled and said “Then offer that up…it’s all you have”.

Union is the point. Unity with God, in prayer, in suffering. Draw closer…and if you use someone else’s suffering to do that…God sorts it all out.

Well, you could certainly pray that the other person’s sufferings do not go to waste, that some good comes from them, especially for the suffering person. Will God refuse such a loving request?

Father Serpa answered this today in his column. He said No, but you can always offer yours up and pray for him.

Well, we already knew that we could offer up our own suffering and pray for someone.:rolleyes:

It is an unusual question, but I suppose that the good Father is right. By virtue of free will, a person can choose whether he, someone else, or no one will benefit from his own suffering.

no I don’t have official teaching, and I don’t know if some of the books purporting to be revelations received by St Gertrude are legit. But to me it seems arrogant to offer the sufferings of someone else, just as it seems arrogant to ask a general pardon for what someone else has done. For instance, I should forgive the Nazis and anti-semites for the harm they have caused civilization, through which I have suffered as a member, but who am I to forgive them in the name of their direct victims?

we do offer back to God what we received as gift, the saving act of Christ, but that is because it is ours to offer, having received it from Christ in the first place and having been allowed to share in that sacrifice.

Sorry catholicmike. I guess I was wrong. Well I always thought it would be good to pray that their suffering would help them be saved. I am a bit confused. :frowning: O well. I can still pray that they do offer their suffering themselves for their own good.

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