Do you know much about this wonderful Irish saint?
St. Dymphna has been a favorite saint of mine since I was a young girl. I remember reading about her in one of my saint books as a child. Her story made a stark impression on me and I never forgot it.
I love how this charcoal drawing turned out. Dymphna will be included in my next set of Saint Notebook Pages.
About St. Dymphna
Dymphna was a princess by birth, raised by a Christian mother. But at 14 her mother died. Her father, Damon, became mentally ill after her mother’s death and not being able to find a wife, her father began to pursue her instead. Dymphna and her confessor, St. Gerebran, tried to escape but were found in Belgium and Damon had the priest beheaded. After Dymphna would still not return with him, he struck off her head.
This beautiful martyr is often pictured holding a book (bible) with a shamrock, and a white lily for her defense of her purity. Sometimes she also wears a crown, holds a candle or the sword by which she was martyred.
Patron of those with nervous and mental afflictions.
None of us know what it’s like to live with someone who is suffering from mental affliction until we do. Whether it be something easy to “put your finger on” or something not fully diagnosed, when you love someone who is suffering it’s painful. Often you may bear the brunt of the problem, being the person closest to them.
No situation is really the same and the spectrum of difficulty can range. I can tell you that it requires a great deal of patience, fortitude, forgiveness and humility to love your way through it. Sometimes there is little compassion because when people are behaving inappropriately, it’s just not acceptable-and rightfully so.
Christian life requires more from us than we normally have the skills and abilities to manage. God stretches us and challenges us to be big people. In addition to expert help and family support, Saint Dymphna is a good saint to go to for help through prayers and intersession. If you or someone you love is struggling from mental/neurological disorders and ailments this is the saint for you. Some disorders that this wonderful saint is comfort for are: Alzheimer’s, eating disorders, bipolar disorder, epilepsy, anxiety disorders, etc.
Saint Dymphna’s shrine is in Gheel, Belgium where she was martyred.
Saint Dymphna Pray for Us
Who’s your favorite Irish saint?