St. Dymphna Shrine in Gheel, Belgium?

Sep 18th, 2006, 11:29 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 721
St. Dymphna Shrine in Gheel, Belgium?

I'm trying to find out some information about a shrine for St. Dympha, patron saint for those with mental illnesses. All I can find from the web is that it's in a town called Gheel which is in Belgium (also sometimes spelled Geel). I gather there is a mental institution at the site as well as a shrine, and that miracles were known to have taken place here.

I can not even find information on where Gheel IS! Train websites have no information at all and I couldn't find it on any map. Does anyone have ANY information about this? (And please, don't attack my religious beliefs)

Thank you
MissZiegfeld is offline  
Sep 18th, 2006, 01:04 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,986
Geel (which is the correct spelling) is a small town (35000 souls) located east of Antwerpen (half an hour by train.
There is indeed a mental institution in Geel but I didn't find information about a shrine.
Check out Wikipedia:
MyriamC is offline  
Sep 21st, 2006, 10:25 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 661
I found a wikipedia page in Dutch about "Dimpna van Geel", or "Dymphna from Geel".
It's basicly about the same as the English page, but it mentions as well that it's the Patron Saint of the city of Geel, which is famous for it's mental institution, especially because psychiatric patients also stay in 'host' families.

Another paragraph translates as follows:
" On the 19th of May 1990 a fraternization took place between the Flemish city of Geel and the German city of Xanten. The reason for the rapprochement of both cities was a "hostile takeover".
According to the legend, in the Middle Ages "Bandits from Xanten" stole the shrines of St.Dymphna and St. Gerebernus. This scene is presented on the main altar of the St.Dimpna church in Geel.
Every five years the city history of Geel is presented in a folkloristic procession, including the outrage of Xanten. The last "Dymphna days", with lots of activites and the procession around the spectacle Gheelmania took place in May 2005.
The remainders of St. Gerebernus are located in a chapel in Sonsbeck close to Xanten, his head is still in Geel."
stardust is offline  
Oct 21st, 2006, 11:48 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 1
Hello, Perhaps if you contact the National Shrine of St. Dymphna in Ohio, they can help you. Good luck, J
hinchcliffe is offline  

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