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  • Writer's pictureFr. Scott Haynes

Eucharistic Miracle of the Island of Tumaco, Colombia

Fr. Scott A. Haynes

The City of Tumaco, Nariño, in southwestern Colombia, is situated on the Pacific coast, on a small island at the south end of Tumaco Bay. The placed is named after an Indian chief, Tumas, who founded the settlement in 1570.

The most remarkable Eucharistic miracle occurred in this place on January 31, 1906. It was 10 o’clock in the morning when a severe undersea earthquake struck the area for about ten minutes. Fearing for their lives, all the villagers ran inside their parish church and begged the pastor, Fr. Gerardo Larrondo, to lead a procession with the Blessed Sacrament.

Fr. Bernardino Garcia of the Conception, who at the time was in the City of Panama, gave the following testimony regarding the terrible cataclysm that struck the area:

Unexpectedly an enormous wave (we refer to them as tsunamis today) crashed into the port, reached into the market area and destroyed everything. Boats that had been drawn up on shore were picked up and hurled long distances away, causing heavy losses.

Through a most marvelous event, the tiny island of Tumaco was spared. This was due to the faith of the people and the Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament by Fr Gerardo Larrondo. As as result of the undersea quake, a tsunami arose. The sea was rapidly rising. Already it had engulfed part of the beach. The violent waters had plunged inland a kilometer and a half. As this quickly developed, a high wall of water was building up. This only threatened to drown the good people and their town in one gigantic tsunamic wave.

The faithful priest, Fr. Gerardo, consumed the small Hosts in the ciborium and set the large Host aside. He called out to his people:

Let us go, my people. Let us go toward the beach, and may God have pity on us.

Comforted by the presence of the Holy Eucharistic, the procession began, as the people were weeping and crying out to God for mercy. Fr. Larrondo had scarcely reached the beach with the monstrance when he advanced courageously to the water’s edge. As the mighty waves came rushing in, he calmly raised the Sacred Host in the monstrance and made the sign of the Cross over the waters. It was a moment of tremendous solemnity. The wave hesitated. It paused. It backed off.

Fr. Larrondo and Fr. Julian, standing alongside him, beheld this with amazement. As this was transpiring, the people were overjoyed. They cried out “Miracle, miracle!” Truly God's powerful hand held back the waves. The mighty wall of water that threatened to wipe the village of Tumaco off the face of the earth was halted and began to recede, and the sea quickly resumed its normal level.

The islanders of Tumaco were overcome with joy. Our Lord in the Most Blessed Sacrament had saved them from death. They offered prayers of thanksgiving with great fervor. The wondrous miracle of Tumaco became known worldwide, and Fr. Larrondo received letters from Europe asking for his prayers.


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