March 30th marks the commemoration of the death of Blessed Dodo the Hermit in 1232. After his father’s death his surviving relatives pressed him to marry. Later, when his wife had entered a convent, he renounced the world and became a Premonstratensian lay-brother at Mariangaarde where St. Siard was then abbot. Because of his great love of solitude he was given permission to live as a hermit. He spent his days in extraordinary acts of penance and mortification; eating only one meal a day and nothing at all on Fridays. For his bed he used a straw mat and a plank of wood. His days were spent on his knees in prayer. He preached particularly against the ‘vendetta’ that was then much a part of the pagan culture of the Frisians. At his death, cause by the collapse of his cell, he was found to have received the stigmata, the five wounds of Christ, upon his body. There is therefore considerable debate as to whether he received this singular privilege of grace before the more famed saint of Assisi.
Blessed Dodo, pray for us!