Saint Drogo

Drogo was born into a noble family in Northern France. His father died before his birth. His mother suffered complications in labour and died as Drogo was born.

As a child Drogo learnt how his Mum died and blamed himself for his Mother’s death. The psychological impact of these guilt feelings stayed with him throughout his life.

Drogo is the patron saint of insanity and the mentally ill.

Coronavirus reports emphasise physical sickness, hospital beds and deaths. Mental Health Awareness Week points to the extreme impact that this pandemic is having on the mental health of children and adults.

Drogo gave away his inherited wealth and lived in humility and austerity as a shepherd. He became a penitential pilgrim, visiting various sacred shrines and travelling to Rome on 9 occasions. He suffered hunger, thirst and physical discomfort in search of holiness and obedience to his god.

As pilgrims on our ‘journey of life’ we look for the path of greatest comfort. Sometimes survival is success. Deliberately choosing the challenging is difficult: Noah choosing to build an ark far from water, David choosing to face his giant, Peter choosing to step out of the boat to walk on water….

Drogo contracted a debilitating and disfiguring affliction. Because his deformities scared those he met he lived in a cell attached to his parish church for the rest of his life.

Through a gap to the church he could hear services and receive the Eucharist. Through a small window to the outside world he received meagre rations of food. People came seeking his advice and wishing to benefit from his prayers.

He is the patron saint of unattractive people, those who others find repulsive

Success is measured by money, possessions, family, health, comfort, good looks and popularity. Drogo stands for all those who are failures.


Saint Drogo (1105-1186) is recorded on various internet sites. My main source was was Crisis magazine – April 16 2015

One thought on “Saint Drogo

  1. an anchorite, like the local lass Julian in Norwich

    ever visited her shrine?

    thanks for Drogo – didn’t know about him



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