During the Octave of Easter, St Gertrude the Great was stirred in her soul to petition Our Lord that she might become fruitful in winning souls for Him. 

She wanted that her good actions become a benefit for souls by virtue of Jesus's Adorable Body. Our Lord quickly assured that through Him, He would make her soul such an effective magnet that she would draw many to Him, "I will certainly make you fruitful in Myself, and I will use you to draw many to Me."

Gertrude couldn't believe this. She felt all her flaws and unworthiness meant that she could never lead "many" to Christ. She made known to Our Lord her incredulity, "How canst Thou draw others to Thee through me, since I am such an unworthy creature, and have almost lost the talent I once had of instructing and conversing with others?"

Our Lord amended her understanding to make her acutely aware that it was not through her talents that she won souls, but through His special grace, "If you now had that facility of speaking, perhaps you would think that it was by this you won souls. Therefore I have deprived you of it in part, that you may acknowledge that the grace which you possess of touching the hearts of others comes from My special grace and not from the power and attractiveness of your words."

Gertrude was being instructed in the same way Christ had instructed His disciples: that she could do nothing without Him. In the Gospel of John, Chapter 15, Our Lord spoke thus, "I am the vine, you are the branches, he that abideth in me and I in him, the same beareth much fruit, for without me you can do nothing."

At the end of the revelation, Our Lord drew Gertrude towards Him and comforted her tenderly, "Even as I draw My breath, so will I draw to Myself all who submit lovingly and devoutly to you for My sake, and I will make them advance daily in perfection."

Our Lord's words are coming true as you read this; Gertrude is leading you to Him. And He pledged to Gertrude that He would draw to Him all those who defer to Gertrude for His sake, and lead them in perfection. This is sufficient encouragement for you and me to become devoted to Gertrude. 

Personally, I was a little amazed to learn that Gertrude is the only female saint who has the title, "the Great", not because I underestimate her, but rather I thought there would be other female saints with "the great" as their title.  I feel the less in comparison to Gertrude, but while Gertrude was a wondrous lady, the same instruction she was given applies directly to you and me: we can do nothing without Our Lord.  

Gertrude was given her revelations many centuries ago, in Germany of the 1200s, but they are just as relevant for you and me today.

Many of you may be like her in that you may have a zeal for souls and you may want to make an offering of your good words for the salvation of others, but you feel prevented by your faults, and even perhaps like Gertrude, you had a talent that has vastly diminished. Pride may tempt you to feel the less of yourself, and you may find it hard to believe that you can be an instrument in the salvation of others. In the truth that is humility, you may even see that if Our Lord allows you to be diminished, this means that your dependence on Him is all the more, and all the more do you acknowledge His power. Like Gertrude, you may discern that you will lead others to Christ, not merely through your talents or by self-reliance, but through His special grace working through you.

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This post was informed by The Life and Revelations of St Gertrude the Great, available in the Spirit Daily store

Classic Painting, Saint Gertrude by Miguel Cabrera


  1. How does one endeavor to submit to St. Gertrude?

    1. Dear Reader,

      Another word for "submit" is obey, and while our first obedience and allegiance is always to Our Lord, I believe we may submit to St Gertrude's example in specific ways that correlate exactly with our personal fight against sin.

      Our Lord was Perfect in every way, and His Mother was totally sinless. Gertrude, however, was not sinless, she was a sinner who became a great saint, and we may follow her example in overcoming sin and in recovering from sin. We may not emulate Our Lord's healing from sin, He never had any sin to overcome in the first place. Our Lord gave us Gertrude in her humility as someone who is, as her title suggests, a great role model for us sinners to follow.

      We may, as Gertrude did, abstain from Holy Communion when we are in serious sin, we may do penance as Gertrude did, to clean the stain left by sin, and we may tackle our root sin as Gertrude did, and we may do as Gertrude did when she gave herself and all her flaws to be used as an instrument even though she felt so keenly aware of her unworthiness.

      You may like to read of the time Gertrude held herself back from receiving the Eucharist because she was in sin, and she made a Spiritual Communion, which Our Lord said was of pure gold" https://thepathlesstaken7.blogspot.com/2020/04/your-spiritual-communion-is-immense.html

      I invite you to pray to St Gertrude that she may give you specific guidance.

      God bless you.

    2. Thank you for the helpful reply. God bless you too, and may St Gertrude intercede for us.


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