Bora beat me to this one (which is what I get for not posting about it yesterday morning when I first saw the story), but some holy water is coming out of a tree in San Antonio, and why has not yet been solved:

SAN ANTONIO (Aug. 12) – Is it an artesian spring, a broken water pipe or an abandoned well? Lucille Pope’s red oak tree has gurgled water for about three months, and experts can’t seem to get to the root of the problem.

Pope, 65, has sought answers from the Texas Forest Service, the Edwards Aquifer Authority and nurseries. They have taken pictures and conducted studies, but none have arrived at a firm answer.

“I got a mystery tree,” Pope said in Friday editions of the San Antonio-Express News. “What kind of mystery do I have where water comes out of a tree?”

Her son, Lloyd, 47, discovered water leaking from the tree in April. He said it was cool, like it came from the tap. The only damp spot around the tree trunk is where the water lands.

Mark Peterson, a regional community forester from the Texas Forest Service said he believes it could be a spring, but pointed out that would be rare with the drought conditions this summer.

Apparently it has some miraculous powers:

Lucille Pope has started to wonder if the water has special properties. Her insurance agent dabbed drops of the water on a spider bite and the welt went away, she said.

“I just want to know if it is a healing tree or blessed water,” she said. “That’s God’s water. Nobody knows but God.”

Can a pilgrimage of the faithful to San Antonio be long off? Any time now, I expect to hear of miraculous cures caused by this water. How long before the Popes start bottling and selling the water as a “cure” for what ails you?

In any case, you can vote on whether you think it’s truly “God’s water.” The vote tallies are running pretty evenly so far.


  1. #1 VKW
    August 13, 2006

    Orac, I have a Holy Shovel (TM pending) and I am willing to travel (back) to San Antonio to employ this Sacred Entrenching Tool to uncover the root of the mystery. At someone else’s expense, of course.

  2. #2 Alison
    August 13, 2006

    Wow. A spider bite went away? Usually those things have to be removed surgically! I’m hopping a plane for Texas right away! (I hope it works, because I won’t be able to bring my tube of Benadryl onto the plane with me.)

  3. #3 Sid Schwab
    August 13, 2006

    I think that all God’s chidren oughter
    Travel south to drink this water
    And none of them should think it odd
    That a single tree taps into God
    I know that there can only be
    Holy water from this tree.
    How do I know, it should be clear
    I came and read about it here

  4. #4 somnilista, FCD
    August 13, 2006

    Wow, and her name is Pope! That reminds me:
    Water at statue draws believers

    WADOWICE, POLAND — Pilgrims are flocking to a new monument of Pope John Paul II in his hometown, touching the water that runs over its base and collecting it in bottles in the belief that it can heal.
    The Roman Catholic Church has not proclaimed the water holy, but since the statue was unveiled in Wadowice in southern Poland on June 30, believers have been turning the life-size bronze figure on a granite base into an informal shrine. The late pontiff was born Karol Wojtyla here in 1920.

  5. #5 Ahistoricality
    August 13, 2006

    The vote’s running 40% against God and 28% for, with a big undecided…. I think we need dowsers to find the source!

  6. #6 SarahBeth
    August 14, 2006

    Actually I can see this becoming a major pilgrimage spot. Kinda like in Chicago when people believed the stain made by water on the wall looked like the Virgin Mary. However, I’m sure there’s a rational, logical explanation. The tree grew over a sprinkler head and it broke or something like that.

  7. #7 somnilista, FCD
    August 19, 2006

    Put San Antonio on hold! You’ve got to get to Mumbai for some sweet seawater!

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