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Barbara B. Foley wrote:

Hi Mike:

I found your site by "googling" Roy Schoeman as my entry. My husband and I had the privilege yesterday of hearing Roy speak at the Magnificat Women's breakfast at the RIT Inn in Rochester, NY. Roy signed the book I brought, his Salvation is From the Jews. The book was bought in September of 2004, after I had seen him interviewed on EWTN.

Since 1958, I have had an interest in the art of astrology, having been introduced to it by an immigrant European woman. Natalie Nuth had been a highly educated woman before the Second World War who was separated from her husband and two children. They were eventually reunited and brought to the United States by a Lutheran Aid society. Natalie told me that most Europeans put stock in the art of character interpretation carried down through the centuries in astrological lore.

As a faithful, practicing Catholic, I made many inquiries regarding the subject as I began my studies. However, I have always remained an amateur. Through the years, I have read many studies done by astronomers and other scientists about the dating of events in the life of Jesus. My main interest has been in the many natal horoscopes done regarding His birth, hence my interest in Schoeman's idea about 4 B.C. being His natal date. Many works indicate that the Chaldean Magi were influenced by the prophecies of Zarathustra, regarding a Prince to be born when certain constellations showed the time and the seasons were ripe. From all these books in my little collection, I have put together my own interpretation of an ideal time for Christ to be born.

In his book, The Dead Sea Scrolls, scholar Geza Vermes gives his interpretation of 4QMess ar which has been called a Messianic Horoscope. Among his translations of that text is the prophecy that the Messiah would have red hair and a birthmark on his thigh, etc. Alleged witness reports to Rome say Jesus had chestnut hair. When I was at Qumran in 1989, the guide showed me a wheel, depicting the signs of the zodiac; it is now in the Rockefeller Museum in Jerusalem. Many mosaic floors of old synagogues in Israel show the horoscopic wheel as well. At Capernaum, I saw a carving of the sea-goat, symbol of Capricorn.

Two years ago, I read the very interesting book by Harvard historian T. Dooley. The book received such a favorable review in America that I ordered it from the library and was sent the Williams college copy. Morandi's Last Prophecy is a work based on the research of Dooley in Italy, regarding a notorious monk, apparently not a good astrologer, from the time of Urban III. Urban eventually published a bull against the study of astrology — although he had been an advocate — before Morandi wrote a letter predicting his imminent death. Galileo had been one of the many, including the clergy, who had used the library that Morandi had amassed. Dooley suggests that this may have played a large part in Urban's displeasure about the work of Galileo.

Apparently a priest, also an astrologer, visited Morandi before the letter was circulated and told him that his calculations were wrong, and that he expected Urban to live on for 13 more years; which he did. Morandi conveniently died in prison after his arrest. It apparently was God's will that astrology be removed from universities; Colbert saw to that in Louis IV's reign. However, it might be the time and the season to reexamine it — as the New Agers consider it their study along with the Gnostic heresies. A Jesuit at St. Peter's College taught the subject for many years. I have his essay on the subject.

Astrology is not only a psychological study, but it involves math also. Alas, I am incompetent in such studies such as math and astronomy, and what I suggest in my horoscope for Jesus is a compilation of the work of others and their math using the coordinates for Bethlehem.

Hopefully you will find my studies somewhat interesting.

Respectfully,

Barbara B. Foley

  { Based on my studies and what I have read, is it time for the Church to re-examine Astrology? }

Mike replied:

Hi Barbara,

I was very concerned about the content of the e-mail you sent me.

The Catechism teaches faithful Catholics that:

CCC 2116 All forms of divination are to be rejected: recourse to Satan or demons, conjuring up the dead or other practices falsely supposed to "unveil" the future.48 Consulting horoscopes, astrology, palm reading, interpretation of omens and lots, the phenomena of clairvoyance, and recourse to mediums all conceal a desire for power over time, history, and, in the last analysis, other human beings, as well as a wish to conciliate hidden powers. They contradict the honor, respect, and loving fear that we owe to God alone.

Astrology is part of the New Age cult. Fr. Mitch Pacwa did a 13 part series on the New Age Movement called, "Who do you say I am?". In it, he stated that all the phony horoscopes are off by one month astronomically! This is one thing astrologers won't tell you. We would recommend
Fr. Mitch's book: "Catholics and the New Age".

For short the Church teaches:

Astrology: stay away from it.

Astrology is the study of the positions and aspects of celestial bodies in the belief that they have an influence on the course of natural earthly occurrences, and human affairs.

Astronomy: is fine!

Astronomy is the scientific study of matter in outer space, especially the positions, dimensions, distribution, motion, composition, energy, and evolution of celestial bodies and phenomena.

You said:
It apparently was God's will that astrology be removed from universities; Colbert saw to that in Louis IV's reign. However, it might be the time and the season to reexamine it — as the New Agers consider it their study along with the Gnostic heresies. A Jesuit at St. Peter's College taught the subject for many years.

There is no need to reexamine interests and practices that the Church has determined are forms of divination that are to be rejected. Again, check out CCC 2116. The Catechism was published in 1994. To hear that a Jesuit has been teaching this for many years, is a scandal to the Catholic Faith Jesus founded on Peter. For short: He's teaching heresy!

You said:
Two years ago, I read the very interesting book by Harvard historian T. Dooley. The book received such a favorable review in America that I ordered it from the library and was sent the Williams college copy.

The Church would not approve of the magazine America as it is a very heterodox, unorthodox magazine. I would not put it on the recommended list of magazines to read on a regular basis. There are many articles which directly undermine the Church's Authority.

You said:
Galileo had been one of the many, including the clergy, who had used the library that Morandi had amassed. Dooley suggests that this may have played a large part in Urban's displeasure about the work of Galileo.

This is incorrect. Read this posting to get the scoop on Galileo:

I questioned a lot of your e-mail, though I'm sure you have a good heart. My advice: Live a sacramental life by going to daily Mass in a state of grace, and get to Confession at least once a month.

Take care,

Mike

Mary Ann replied:

Barbara,

I agree with Mike completely. I would add that St. Paul says in Colossians that

"God's secret is Christ Himself; in Him lie hidden all God's treasures of wisdom and knowledge. I tell you this to save you from being talked into error by specious arguments."

Colossians 2:3-4

Read the rest of Colossians, chapter 2. There are many other times that St. Paul speaks against those who would lead us into the confusing path of false knowledge, via charts and genealogies and divinations and levels of knowledge and special diets, and all manner of things that were current then and are current again now.

Swear off astrology now. Renounce it in the name of Christ, even if you don't feel that you want to do so. Just ask God's help and say the words. Someone in Magnificat should be able to direct you to someone orthodox, preferably a priest, who has a deliverance ministry.

As for all the pseudo-historical information, bear in mind that the Israelites sinned by using divination and by worshipping false gods, so it is not surprising to find evidence of pagan beliefs in the Holy Land.

God bless you.

Mary Ann

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