I have a good friend that is recieving counseling and treatment for self injury and I was wondering if there is a Patron Saint for people who cut or self injure in other ways. He isn’t suicidal, he just cuts in order to deal with his depression. I would like to buy him a medal for this saint as a gift of encouragement. Thanks to all who respond, please keep him in your prayers as well, I’d rather not post his name just for privacy reasons. Thanks all.
I would suggest St. Rose of Lima. She is said to have mutilated and scarred her face in order to be unappealing to the suitors her parents wanted her to marry so that she could live a life of prayer.
She is one of a handful of saints who show us that it is possible to be both mentally ill AND a saint. Some of her ascetical practices, viewed through the lens of psychology, would appear to be disordered. Nevertheless, she lived a life that modeled great charity towards the poor.
Other saints who struggled with mental illness or psychological disorders are St. Benedict Joseph Labre and possibly Charles de Foucauld. It could be argued that some of our greatest saints passed through times of terrible mental distress: Rita of Cascia and even Francis of Assisi come to mnd.
By the way, to be a patron of the mentally ill, a saint doesn’t have to have lived it herself (although it may or may not have happened in this case). She might also have dealt with it in those around her, or persons with mental illness may have had prayers answered through her intercession.
Remember to have the medal (once obtained) properly blessed by a Catholic priest before you give it to him.
I suggest, rather than a Saint against self-injury, get a Saint against depression. St. Dymphna (or is it Dympna?) is a patron Saint of depression. Also, our Lady of Sorrows (Mary shown with her heart pierced with seven symbolic daggers) could be a Saint of depression, since she suffered infinite sorrow at the death of her divine Son.