Miracle at Sitio Barriles?

David Dell

By David Dell

Table of Contents

Believe in miracles? The following might be described as the Miracle at Sitio Barriles.

In a world full of disbelief and skepticism, where corporate and political corruption is an everyday occurrence, it’s hard to imagine that good and honest things still happen. It’s even harder to imagine that occasionally these good events border on the miraculous.

Six kilometers west of the Panamanian mountain town of Volcan is a small archeological site called Sitio Barriles.

This place first came into prominence back in the late 1940’s when National Geographic did an excavation of an old house site. The petroglyphs and artifacts found at the site seemed to indicate that a community of pot makers and stone carvers lived there at least 2,500 years ago.

Lemons as large as footballs

Today, the site is the home of Edna Landau and her family. Edna will take you on a tour and show you its many rock carvings and funerary pots, often without charge. There is very definite air of peace and tranquility about the place. Edna claims that the natural spring waters and some of the ancient magnetic stones have healing abilities.

If your skepticism needs a little bit of a reality check, then glance up in a tree behind her house, there you will see half a dozen or more enormous yellow fruits. They are about 10 to 12 inches long and weigh about 15 pounds each.

At first, I jokingly called them “lemons on steroids”. I was somewhat right – they are indeed lemons – but they grow to this amazing size naturally, with no outside help other than that of Mother Nature.

Tragedy strikes

Jose Eduardo

Edna has a 27-year-old son, Jose Eduardo. He is a bright young man and was studying to be an engineer.

In 2000, he developed hydro encephalitis (water on the brain) and needed surgery to drain the fluids.

Through medical misfortune while in hospital, he was hit by a virulent super bug which developed into meningitis. Septic shock followed, and for six months he lay in a total vegetative state. He was fed intravenously, and a tube in his lower abdomen removed his wastes.

Edna recalls seeing Eduardo lying there day after day, completely motionless, with unseeing and motionless eyes. He was then transferred to a much larger hospital in Panama City.

The doctors there advised her there was nothing they could do. No doubt, the hopelessness of the situation led to discussions of letting Eduardo “die with dignity”.

Eduardo comes home

February 26, 2003, Eduardo returned home to Sitio Barriles. He had recovered from his coma but was still totally dependant on his mother for feeding and bodily functions.

Edna Landau set out to achieve what the best of modern medical science could not – keep her son alive and to have him walk again.

She treated Eduardo with a simple herbal wine mixture of noni, garlic and sour lemons (the same anti-oxidant rich lemons that grow behind her house). The concoction was sweetened and made palatable with the addition of blackberry wine.

I first saw Eduardo in May, 2005. He was smiling and looked happy but his skin color was pale and he was barely able to feed himself.

Progress allowed his body functions to return to normal, and the colostomy tube was removed. In addition to the wine tonic, Edna carried him to the nearby magnetic stones and rubbed his hands against them.

She had defied all medical predictions just by keeping her son alive – but her ultimate goal was to see him walk. He still could not stand on his own.

A miracle at Sitio Barriles?

January 19, 2006, I returned to Sitio Barriles. This time I had my wife and a Dutch journalist with me. There on the porch of the small Landau house was Eduardo.

His skin color had improved remarkably since I last saw him. His is eyes glowed with health and vitality. He smiled, and I could see his hands were now opening and closing with greater force.

Was the cause a mother’s undying love and determination, or the mysterious natural powers vested in tropical fruits?

I felt a bit awkward as I asked Edna when she thought Eduardo might walk again. “Oh, he’s walking already,” she said with a proud, beaming smile.

She crossed over to Eduardo and eased him slowly from his chair. He stood there partially supported by his mother and partially with a walking cane.

He looked across at me with a big smile and, as his mother released her grip and removed the cane, miraculously he walked towards me.

True, they were slow, shuffling awkward steps, but this young man who had been all but given up for dead was not only alive and well but he was indeed walking again.

Where does the real power come from?

I feel sure that Jose Eduardo Landau will return to full health. He will one day return to being a tour guide and regale tourists with stories of this beautiful and wonderful area.

Perhaps his most amazing story will be the fact that he is there to tell the stories himself.

Is this just an isolated medical miracle? Or could others be helped with natural treatment?

One thing I can attest to is that since I have been taking a wine mixture of noni and another tropical fruit called borojo, my energy has increased, and several times in past days, I have walked without stopping up steep hills.

Normally, as a 60-year-old retiree, I would have been winded, gasping and feeling tightness in the chest. Not now! I feel as though I am physically fit and at least 10 years younger.

Edna Landau says many things have helped in her son’s recovery, but she attributes the real cause not to her wine mixture or to some power in ancient mystical stones. Quietly and humbly, she points upwards and says the real power came from prayer and from God.

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