Saint Begga

Saint Begga
Born: 7th Century
Died: 17th December 693, Belgium
Feast Day: 17th December
Shrine: St Begga’s Collegiate Church Andenne
Also Known As: Begue, Begge

Saint Begga was born to nobility being the first daughter of Pepin of Landen, mayor of the palace of Australasia and his wife Itta of Metz.  She was older sister of St Gertrude of Nivelles.  She married Ansegisel son of Arnulf, Bishop of Metz and they had three children: Pepin of Heristal, Martin of Laon and Clotilda of Heristal who married Theuderic III of the Franks.  Ansegisel was slain in a feud with Gundewin (another story suggests he died in a hunting accident). On his death, Begga travelled to Rome, took the veil, and founded seven churches and a convent on the Meuse River at Andenne on her return.  She spent the rest of her days as abbess of the convent, the first nuns came from Nivelles and introduced Irish monastic customs. She was buried at Collegiate Church in Andenne.

She is invoked for the cure of hernia’s and infant diseases.  Although she has been the Patroness of the Beguines since the 14th Century, she is not their foundress.