Bruno Groening - an extraordinary person
In 1949 the name Bruno Groening became a household word in Germany overnight. Reports about him appeared in the press, in newsreels and on the radio. Events surrounding the ”Miracle Doctor” as he soon came to be called, kept the whole country in suspense. A film was made about him, scientific investigation committees were set up and government authorities at the highest level gave the case of Bruno Groening their attention. The Minister for Social Affairs in North-Rhine-Westphalia had him prosecuted for violating the law for non-medical practitioners, while the Minister President of Bavaria declared that one could not let such an ”exceptional occurrence” as Groening founder because of a few paragraphs on paper. The Bavarian Ministry of the Interior labelled his work ”a labour of love, free of charge”.
The case was violently and controversially debated by everyone at all levels of society. Emotions ran high. Clergymen, physicians, journalists, politicians and psychologists: everyone spoke about Groening. Some considered his miraculous healings a gift of grace from a Higher Power, others, charlatanism. But the reality of the healings was confirmed by medical examinations.
Bruno Groening, born in 1906 in Danzig, was a simple workman who moved to Western Germany as a refugee after World War II. Before the war he had various occupations: carpenter, factory and dock labourer, Post Office worker and electrician. Then, suddenly he was the centre of public attention. The news of his miraculous healings spread all over the world. From every country came sick people, petitions and proposals. Tens of thousands made the pilgrimage to the places where he worked. A revolution in medicine was impending.
But counterforces were at work. Influential doctors, church officials, lawyers and his previous fellow workers did their utmost to foil his activities. He was dogged by court cases and healing bans. All efforts to incorporate his work into the existing social structure failed. On the one hand there was the resistance of those in authority in the various branches of the social order, on the other, the greed for financial profit on the part of his fellow workers. When he died in Paris in 1959 the last court trial was well under way. The proceedings were halted and a final verdict never pronounced. But many questions remained unanswered,