Gudule/Goedule (Gudula) (Saint)
- (ca. 648-ca. 712)One of the two patron saints of Brussels, Gudule was born in Hamme, East Flanders. She was a member of the nobility—her mother Amalberga was a niece of Pepin, the first Carolingian king of the Franks—and she was educated by her cousin Gertrude of Nivelles. After her cousin's death she lived in Brabant, and, a virgin, she consecrated her life to prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. She died in the town of her birth and allegedly was buried in front of the church door. From there her relics were transferred to Moortsel, in Flanders, and brought by Charles of France to the chapel of Saint-Géry near his castrum in Brussels in 984. Count Lambert II had the remains removed to the church of Saint-Michel, the successor of which was the collegiate church of Saints-Michel-et-Gudule, which was so named on the transfer of the relics in 1047. On the night of 7 June 1579, Calvinists ransacked the church, plundered the shrine of its gold and jewelry, and scattered the relics.Much of what is known about Saint Gudule is of uncertain veracity, and an investigation by the Vatican could find no evidence of her canonization. In art she is often depicted with a lamp or a candle, which it is said the devil extinguished but which was immediately relit by divine power. Her feast is celebrated on 8 January.See also Michael the Archangel.
Historical Dictionary of Brussels. Paul F. State.