Why did God not help the Nazi victims


I was reading this story about a Christian man named Dietrich
Bonhoeffer who was a Pastor and was killed by the Nazis.
This man would have prayed a lot and for Gods will to be done-why did God not help/save him (and the others ) in this situation?
Sometimes I’m becoming like cynical thinking that God has no power to help people on earth or just let’s human life/nature to run its course.
It seems like only if “human means” had of come and liberated the camp would they have been saved.

I find it hard to pray “gods will be done” because I don’t trust Gods will…apparently it was Gods will in this situation for this man (and many many Jewish) to die so it seems like sometimes Gods will is a very negative thing so how can people trust it?
I hope that doesn’t sound arrogant,it’s just how I am feeling lately.

The bible says God has plans to help and not harm you but this man was harmed in this instant.


We are pilgrims on this earth. Our goal is the Beatific Vision. The sooner we arrive the better. Yet, some of us need much more purification than others. Notice that the Saints often died very young.

And, what did our Lord say?

“In this world you will have tribulation. But, take heart, for I have overcome this world” John 16:33


Your question goes to the heart of why God allows suffering. This is the hardest question we have to grapple with, but the more one comes to know God, the easier it is to grasp the answer. I am by no means an expert, but here are a few thoughts:

Even though we don’t want to hear it, death is not the worst thing that can happen to us. Being separated from God for eternity is the worst thing.

We need to remember that death comes to all of us, some much sooner than others, and none of us are guaranteed a life without suffering. Life isn’t about being happy here…life is about loving God and being loved by Him, and living our lives for His glory.

God allows sinful man free will, and unfortunately, that includes the ability to commit great acts of violence and wickedness. We also have the ability to do great things for God, and small acts for God that no one else notices.

We’re not here on earth to question God, but we can trust Him that He alone can bring good out of darkness. He alone knows how many people in that Nazi camp turned their lives over to Him and were saved, instead of living free lives and ignoring Him. He alone knows what good He was able to bring out of that horrible time.

Instead of focusing on the seemingly tragic and pointless suffering, we should instead focus on Jesus and how He suffered for us. We’re called to imitate Him in our sufferings. Many, many people who died during the Holocaust were heroic martyrs…dying to save others, dying because they refused to deny God. We can look to them for examples of heroic courage.

Have you read Corrie Ten Boom’s book The Hiding Place? God showed the supernatural power of His forgiveness through her. She was able to forgive the Nazis who had tortured her and caused the death of her sister. Read it…I think it will help.

Draw closer to God…knowing Him intimately is the only answer to grief, because He Himself is the only Answer when our hearts are in agony. Jesus is enough, and one day when we’re with Him we’ll understand why things had to be this way here on earth. We can trust Him that we are in the palm of His hand, and nothing happens except for our good.


Our purpose here on earth is to:

  1. Know God
  2. Love God
  3. Serve God

Not to question His motives. We are far better off questioning or doubting ourselves.


Something that helps me is to remember that I don’t have the ‘big picture’. I have no idea why things have to happen a certain way. I am only privy to my own little corner of the universe. Only God has all the pieces of the puzzle, and knows why things have to happen the way they do. Also, prayer is not a magic spell that will automatically give us whatever we wish for. It’s like someone once said: God answers every prayer, but sometimes the answer is No.


Thanks @all,

If we are just here though to love and serve God and do his will,doesn’t that just make us puppets of sorts?
Isn’t it hard to love a God that doesn’t care about our will/personality expressions/desires?
A really poor analogy,but it would be like being married to a man that doesn’t care about your wishes at all.


But that’s just the point, really. Our wishes don’t matter. We don’t matter, or as little as makes no difference. This was the elementary error made by the Protestants. All that matters is God and what He wants. The purpose of our lives here, practically speaking, is to love one another and God with all our hearts and souls, so that we will be prepared to love Christ perfectly when we reach Heaven. That is our only purpose for existing, and it is really the deepest desire of our souls as well, if only we knew it. Self-sacrifice, self-denial, love of Christ…that is where our true joy lies. Our gaze must turn decisively away from the face in the mirror and fix itself permanently on Christ. Only then will we have any hope of happiness.


I think a person would have to be a pretty amazing person to go “God,disregard all my personality,my wishes and wants and do what you want with your will” and I don’t think I’m that great of a person/capable of that :frowning:


allowing a good man to die is what brought salvation to the world, Jesus laid down his life so he could take it up again, you can’t loose sight of this.

Your asking why does God not intercede in all our requests if we are good people who pray and ask for help and the answer is he is not the God the world demands, he is not a genie in a bottle that would defeat the purpose of our existence on earth. hence some people need to become victim souls, remember Christ said we all deserve death and it is our lack of faith that stops us moving mountains. Remember the gospels remember the Apostles who died for the faith and the many many through the years that died for the gospel and those that today still die for the gospel in places like China.
Why not see this great man as a soul now in eternity with God as he has run his race fought his fight and now rests in eternal joy?


This may seem simplistic,but what’s the point of people then trying to have faith in situations that God will help when 99% chance He won’t anyway?


It seems impossible to discern when God intervenes in situations or let’s nature take its course.


I’m sure that question has gone through the minds of many of us, that 6 million+people died in what was such an atrocious, unspeakable manner. That pure evil in the form of one man hypnotized those people,who called themselves Nazis. Truly Satan’s work was behind all of those who would reach out to him. We pray for all those souls lost. You mentioned a priest who was killed, God rest his soul. Do you know of Maximilian Kolbe? He was a priest who was at Auschwitz. He is now a Saint, also known as the Saint of Auschwitz, for he traded places with a man who was going to be executed. Please Google his name, and the story about him.Also Oskar Schindler who was a business man who saved alot of lives. We don’t have the answers to alot, but knowing there were good people who did not fear the face of evil gives us faith that God had His Angels there. You will be remembered at Mass today as well as every soul that perished. God bless you.


Thankyou Anna.


“In such a place, no words are possible, just stupefied silence which makes one ask God: why? Why did You not say anything? How was He able to tolerate such destruction? I pray to God not to allow a similar thing to ever happen again.”


How a so-called civilised country like Germany could accept Hitler and the Nazis was always a puzzle to me .

Yes there were exceptions , and some Germans did fight against the Nazis .

It is one of the things which convinces me of the reality of the devil .


You should read about the LIttle Way of St. Therese. We are all little souls who need the help of God in matters such as this. You need Jesus to give you the strength to trust Him more than you trust in your belief that you are too weak to die to yourself and live for Him. In Him you can do all things.


I think when we are asking God for help we are communicating with Him and sharing His grace. We are acknowledging our weakness and perhaps learning lots of lessons on what we can humanly do to make the situation better.

I think it is a little bit like the sportsmen who are both asking God to help them even though they are on different teams. It can help us materially but sometimes there are other factors we are not aware of. Communing with God and sharing the experience with Him can strengthen us. When I ,look at the suffering of Jesus I try to understand that sometimes suffering is there for us to overcome it and be better people. We all will see family members die and die ourselves. Chances are there will be a lot of suffering somewhere in there. It seems to be part of life. At least in this world. Perhaps it is a good practice to daily be thankful for the different good things so that we have a truer perspective?


Don’t know about you but he HAS helped me out of 99% of bad and potentially bad situations of my life. And he probably has done the same for you. And he has also allowed me to suffer. But even then I believe he was there helping me. I don’t know why he allows me to suffer. All i know is that he knows what greater good he can bring out of it. Because I believe God is good, I trust him.

God will always help. The mistake is expecting thay God will help in the way you want him to. That is not always the case.

As scary as it might be, there are few prayers more liberating then “Lord, I trust in you to help me through this. May your will be done. “


Why did the Father allow his own Son to be tortured?

There have been oceans of ink written on why God permits suffering.

We have to trust Him.


Regarding the article posted by @Rob2

The Vatican still struggles with criticism over its silence in the face of Nazi mass murder

I have heard this before, I don’t know where people are getting this information from. In fact, the Vatican was one of the few organizations that did actually make a real difference. Hundreds of thousands of Jews were saved by Pope Pius XII and the Catholic Church.


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