April 14

St. Lydwine

Saint Lydwine

Early Life

There are various accounts about Saint Lydwine. These various accountsdiffer in major parts of her life, but all accounts talk about herperseverance and love for God.

Saint Lydwine, also called Lidwid, Lidwina, and Lydwine of Schiedam, wasborn in Schiedam, County of Holland, in the Holy Roman Empire. She wasborn on the 18th of April in 1380.

Although there are several biographical recounts of this saint, thereseems to be no mention of her mother. Her father, who is not named, isonly said to be an artisan.

Saint Lydwine was said to have eight siblings. She was a bubbly younggirl who loved her neighbors, but most of all loved God. Even at a youngage, she was said to have taken time out of her daily life to say herprayers.

The most popular account of Saint Lydwine’s story states that at the ageof 15, Circa 1396, she was struck by an unfortunate event that wouldmake her revered till today.

At the age of 15, Saint Lydwine was said to have been ice skating withfriends. One of these friends bumped into her causing her to fall andbreak a rib.

Although initially looking like something that could easily be treated,her injury worsened. After some time, an abscess formed at the site ofthe injury and grew worse as the day went by.

Dedication and Devotion

Saint Lydwine became bedridden, and her days were filled with gloom andpain. Regardless, it was said that she didn’t let this affect hercompetence.

Saint Lydwine remained cheerful. She prayed and fasted, asking for Godto let her cup of pain pass over.

It seemed God didn’t hear her because the abscess burst and spreadthroughout her body. Her body became gangrenous and began to affect herorgans.

Pieces of Lydwine’s body were said to have fallen out, and she continuedto bleed from her mouth, nose, ears, and eyes. It grew increasinglydifficult for her to function.

At some point in time, Saint Lydwine became paralyzed and couldn’t bemoved from her bed. During this trying time, she prayed to God, and itwas shown to her that this was God’s plan for her.

Several maladies befell her, but she became cheerful because shebelieved God was with her. Because of her sores and festering wounds, noone wanted to be associated with her, but she did not complain.

In addition to her sufferings, Saint Lydwine was said to have sufferedfrom stigmata. These injuries on her hands and feet bore an eerieresemblance to Jesus’.

Some people claimed she faked the mark of stigmata, but after seeing itfor themselves and hear her preach about the love of God even in herpain, they were convinced.

Saint Lydwine was especially devoted to the Virgin Mary. She continuedto fast and pray, and soon, she became popular for her healing powers.


Saint Lydwine was said to have been blessed with spiritual gifts. Notonly was she a miraculous healer who prayed for the sick people back tohealth, but she was also said to suffer from visions of heaven and hell.

Some traditions even claim she had encounters with apparitions that shewas convinced were Jesus Christ.

Lydwine suffered from nausea, headaches, pain, fever, and evenblindness, but these didn’t stop her from carrying out her prayers andfast with enthusiasm.

She was visited by the rich and famous. She was also said to have beentested by a skeptical priest who left her home with new respect and awefor her.

Death and Canonization

  1. She was buried in a chapel in her hometown. Her tomb became a
    popular pilgrimage.

5 Interesting Facts About Saint Lydwine

  1. Did you know that Saint Lydwine is the patron saint of the
    chronically ill, Ice skaters, and Schiedam?
  2. Did you know that Saint Lydwine was said to be the first-ever
    recorded patient suffering from multiple sclerosis?
  3. Did you know that some accounts concerning Saing Lydwine state that
    she was impregnated by a priest in the area? It claims that this
    was the reason why she had a ‘swollen’ body.
  4. Did you know that a written document from Saint Lydwine’s hometown
    Schiedam testifies to her extreme piety of fasting and praying for
    long hours at length? This document is said to be in existence
    till today.
  5. Did you know that Saint Lydwine was said to have survived on bites
    of apples, dates, sips of wine, and for some time, the Holy

Prayer to Saint Lydwine

O Glorious Saint Lydwine of Schiedam, you were chosen by Christ tosuffer immense pain for poor sinners and to offer up all your sufferingsto Him.Intercede on our behalf and help us through our small sufferings thatcannot be compared to yours.Grant us the grace to trust completely in Jesus even during times ofdeep sorrow and confusion. Help us to always place our petitions in thehands of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who on our behalf will offer up ourpetitions to Jesus like how she did kindly for you.May we be given the grace to persevere in sufferings until the Lordcalls us home to enjoy the Glory of Heaven. Amen.Saint Lydwine, whose life was filled with intense sufferings for poorsinners, pray for us!