Anxious or Depressed? Turn to Saint Dymphna: 7 Things to Know About the Patron of Mental Afflictions

Today, many Catholics look to Saint Dymphna as a model of faith and courage, praying to her for protection, healing, and peace in difficult times.

Here are seven things to know and share about the life of Saint Dymphna:

Caroline Perkins, ChurchPOP

1) Born in Ireland sometime during the seventh century.

2) Her father was a pagan king. It is said her Christian mother secretly baptized and raised her in the faith.

Caroline Perkins, ChurchPOP

3) When Dymphna’s mother died, her father became so unhinged that he listened to sinful suggestions that he remarry his own daughter.

4) She fled to Belgium to avoid his outrage over her rejection. Her confessor, Fr. Gerebran, joined her.

Caroline Perkins, ChurchPOP

5) Dymphna’s father and his men later discovered her. She was martyred protecting her purity at age 15. Both she and her confessor became saints!

6) Patroness of mental illness and nervous disorders, including anxiety, depression, autism, and dementia.

Caroline Perkins, ChurchPOP

7) Many travel to the church named after Saint Dymphna in Geel, Belgium. They seek her intercession for healing from mental afflictions.

Here is a prayer calling on Saint Dymphna:

Good Saint Dymphna, great wonder-worker in every affliction of mind and body, I humbly implore your powerful intercession with Jesus through Mary, the Health of the Sick, in my present need. (Mention it.)

Saint Dymphna, martyr of purity, patroness of those who suffer with nervous and mental afflictions, beloved child of Jesus and Mary, pray to Them for me and obtain my request.

(Pray one Our Father, one Hail Mary and one Glory Be.)

Saint Dymphna, Virgin and Martyr, pray for us.

A Prayer Entrusting a Loved One to the Intercession of Saint Dymphna:

Lord Jesus Christ,
You have willed that Saint Dymphna should be
invoked by thousands of clients as
the patroness of nervous and mental disease,
and have brought it about that her interest
in these patients should be an inspiration to
and an ideal of charity throughout the world.

Grant that through the prayers of this
youthful martyr of purity, those who suffer
from nervous and mental illness everywhere
on earth may be helped and consoled.

I recommend to You in particular
(Here mention those you wish to pray for).

Be pleased to hear the prayers of
Saint Dymphna and of Your Blessed Mother

Help of the sick and Comforter of the afflicted,
on behalf of those whom I recommend to the
love and compassion of Your Sacred Heart,
give them patience to bear with their affliction and resignation to do Your divine will.

Give them the consolation they need and especially the cure they so much desire, if it be Your will.

May we all serve Your suffering members with a charity which may merit for us the reward of being united forever in Heaven with You, our Divine Head, who lives and reigns with the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit forever.


Saint Dymphna, pray for us!

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