Pierre de Rudder
Born on 7/2/1822 in Jabbeke in Belgium.
Cured on 4/7/1875, in his 53rd. year. Miracle on 7/25/1908, by Mgr Gustave Waffelaert, Bishop of Bruges.
The story of this well-known cure has been told thousands of times. We have already seen that it was not the first cure obtained outside Lourdes, but there was no doubt that it stands as the first cure and miracle which happened without any use of Lourdes' water.
In 1867, Pierre de RUDDER had his leg crushed when a tree fell down. As a result he sustained an open fracture of both bones in the upper third of the left leg.
Despite all treatment given, it was obvious from an early stage that the fracture would never heal. Due to local infection, and (because of it) the elimination of newly formed bone over the years, a pseudoarthrosis set in at the site of the fracture, and there was not the slightest chance of the bones uniting.
The doctors advised amputation several times, but Pierre de RUDDER refused. After a few years, these doctors abandoned him, because they were absolutely powerless to help his chronic condition.
In this state, eight years after the accident, Pierre de RUDDER decided to make a pilgrimage to Oostacker on 4/7/1875, where a replica of the Grotto of Lourdes had recently been built for the piety of our Belgian neighbours. Setting off from Jabbeke in the morning as an invalid, unable to stand on his left leg, he returned in the evening without crutches or wounds.
The bones had united in a matter of minutes, without any shortening or deviation from the vertical axis. During the following days, the doctors who had treated him, verified these changes.
Pierre de RUDDER resumed a normal and active life straightaway. To our knowledge, he went to Lourdes, at least once, and that was in May 1881.
On 3/22/1898, he died, 23 years after his cure.
Later, for further proof, the bones of both legs were exhumed. This allowed us to see the objective evidence, the site of the fracture in its healed state, which can now be seen in the moulds in the possession of the Medical Bureau.
In July 1908, 33 years later (a sort of record!) the Bishop of Bruges declared that in the cure of Pierre de RUDDER, one could see a miracle attributable to "an intervention by God, obtained through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary".