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Loretta wrote:

Hi, guys —

I am observing and teaching at a Catholic school and the teacher, whose class I am in, was telling the students that fortune telling and horoscopes were only sinful if you believe them — but that you can still go to them.

Later, in another period, the teacher was teaching the same thing and she posed the question about if fortune telling is a sin to the class, then she kind of put me on the spot, and wanted me to say what she had said in her previous class, which was that it's only a sin if you believe it, so I did, because I didn't want to correct her or whatever.

  • I felt so guilty because, isn't it a sin to go to a fortune teller or palm reader, even if you don't believe in them?

I think I committed scandal because I am a superior to the high school kids and I don't know what to do.

  • Am I obligated to tell the students that it actually is a sin?

I'm not teaching that class full-time until about another week so:

  • should I tell them that it actually is a sin when I start teaching them?, or
  • should I try to tell them on Monday, even though the teacher will still be teaching that class?

I'm not sure how I would do this. I'm also worried because after the teacher called on me to confirm what she said about fortune tellers, she went on to say how she did Ouija boards when she was young but that those things are stupid and she didn't actually believe they could do anything. I completely disagree with that, and am worried the students think I would agree with that statement, when I don't.

I just don't know what to do. This is a weird position I'm in but I don't want to neglect a duty of fraternal correction or repairing scandal or whatever and go to Hell : (

Please help!


  { After this guilty mistake, should I tell these students what I agreed with, was wrong, now or later? }

Bob replied:


I appreciate your predicament, but now is the time for courage, wisdom and prudence. While you don't want to embarrass the other teachers, you are right that this needs to be corrected ASAP. It is a grave sin to participate in any kind of divination, and is extremely dangerous as well, because it gives license to the demonic to have access. It is strictly forbidden, and the other teachers who dismiss it are foolish, naive and ignorant. Just because, in her personal experience, she did not see preternatural happenings does not mean they are any less real. I would personally question the fitness of someone like that to teach CCD, but I don't know them well enough to know the whole story, so I won't judge any further.

You should do several things:

  • Talk to the pastor ASAP about how he wants this corrected.
  • Watch some YouTube videos on exorcism and the demonic to see true stories of how Ouija boards and other divining practices were the conduit to demonic oppression, depression and even possession. (See below) Also, search Taylor Marshall and Jesse Romero.
  • Lastly, know the Catechism of the Catholic Church's teaching.

Catechism of the Catholic Church - Second Edition.

III. "You Shall Have No Other Gods Before Me"

Divination and magic

2115 God can reveal the future to his prophets or to other saints. Still, a sound Christian attitude consists in putting oneself confidently into the hands of Providence for whatever concerns the future, and giving up all unhealthy curiosity about it. Improvidence, however, can constitute a lack of responsibility.

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. (cf. Deuteronomy 18:10; Jeremiah 29:8) 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.

2117 All practices of magic or sorcery, by which one attempts to tame occult powers, so as to place them at one's service and have a supernatural power over others - even if this were for the sake of restoring their health - are gravely contrary to the virtue of religion. These practices are even more to be condemned when accompanied by the intention of harming someone, or when they have recourse to the intervention of demons. Wearing charms is also reprehensible. Spiritism often implies divination or magical practices; the Church for her part warns the faithful against it. Recourse to so-called traditional cures does not justify either the invocation of evil powers or the exploitation of another's credulity.

Here are some YouTube samples:

You were right to write us, now go and do what is right to protect these children.


Bob Kirby

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