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The Mike Church Show World HQ

Galileo Was Wrong And Why It Matters – Talk With Robert Sungenis


Defenders of Christendom landscape pic 1300w x 975hMandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – We must look for ultimate purpose, not the secondary cause, always ultimate.  We’ll do that today with Robert Sungenis, who is our special guest on the Dude Maker Hotline with us.  Robert, before we were interrupted at the end of last our, we had just gotten to Galileo publishing his work around 1610 or so.  I’ll let you pick it up from there.  Check out today’s transcript for the rest….

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Begin Mike Church Show Transcript

Mike:  Like Brother Francis, we always look for ultimate purpose.  We must look for ultimate purpose, not the secondary cause, always ultimate.  We’ll do that today with Robert Sungenis, who is our special guest on the Dude Maker Hotline with us.  Robert, before we were interrupted at the end of last our, we had just gotten to Galileo publishing his work around 1610 or so.  I’ll let you pick it up from there.  You were getting ready to say that someone else had published a work two years prior to Galileo?

Robert Sungenis:  Actually one year, 1615.  He was tight in with the Vatican.  His name is Father Foscarini.  He is, matter of fact, the first one to show or try to show that you could defend heliocentrism from Scripture.  The way they would do that, of course, was by figuratizing the verses that talked about geocentrism.  There’s a whole art to that.  Galileo was the second one who did it.  It’s interesting how history is

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written because the one that began the whole controversy was Father Foscarini.  It wasn’t Galileo.  Galileo was actually following in the footsteps of Father Foscarini.

Galileo was a little bit more verbose than Father Foscarini, and he didn’t publish a book yet.  Father Foscarini had already published his book and it was condemned in that same year.  Galileo took the baton and ran with it, but he was shut down right away by Cardinal Bellarmine.  Cardinal Bellarmine was the one that basically took on the Protestant Reformation single handedly and shut it down because it could have been a lot worse.  He started the Counter-Reformation at that point in time.  The Catholic Church survived because of Bellarmine’s work.

Now here comes Galileo with a second onslaught against the church, basically telling the church that it’s been wrong for 1500 years and that it doesn’t know how to interpret scripture.  That’s where the rubber met the road with the Church.  They said: You’re telling us we don’t know how to interpret the scripture?  We have all the patristic evidence from all the church fathers telling us that this is the way we’re supposed to interpret the scripture.  Any newcomer that’s going to tell us not to do so, the burden of proof is certainly on him.

The thing about Galileo is he had no scientific proof for his claims.  He had something about the tides that he said had to be caused by a rotating earth.  Of course, that’s not provable.  He said just because the moons go around Jupiter, that means that the smaller has to go around the larger.  That may be true in many cases but not every case, so he couldn’t use that for the Earth and the Sun.  There was a long battle.  Then Galileo was silent for a while.  Then he started to write his magnum opus about the two worlds.  That book he started in 1623.  Then he had and imprimatur given to that book in 1631.  He did this by sleight of hand.  He got his friend, Father Riccardi up in Florence, to give him an imprimatur.  They did a lot to Father Riccardi.  They put pressure on him from Cosmo Medici, who was the Duke of Tuscany.  They brought in his daughter and they gave wine to father Riccardi.  Finally Father Riccardi gave an imprimatur to Galileo.

Mike:  So he was drunk.

Sungenis:  Yeah, they got him drunk.  There’s a whole long story behind that.

Mike:  Hold on just a second, Robert.  Let’s explain a couple things to people right now.  When Robert says imprimatur, this is the term that most people are probably unfamiliar and probably wonder why that matters.  What’s an imprimatur?  They’ll know it as soon as you explain it, but why did it matter?

Sungenis:  If you’re going to write a book that teaches theology, especially from the Bible, which is what Galileo was doing, you need the sanction of the Church in order to do so, especially in those days when doctrine really mattered and the Church wanted to protect its people from any false ideas that were out there.  In order to have something like that published, you had to have the authorization of the Church, which they called an imprimatur.

Mike:  This father was talked into it.  Basically he was plied with wine and heaven knows what else into loaning his imprimatur.  There’s another question that I have, and perhaps we can just kind of sidebar into this for a moment.  What did Galileo say about, I think it’s in the book of Judges where the sun is held still for a day so that the Israelites can clobber the opponent with the sun in their eyes.

Sungenis:  Yes, that’s Joshua 10: 10-14.  This was one of the passages that Bellarmine said was the strongest passage in the Old Testament to defend the geocentric system.  The reason for that was that, as Joshua told the sun to stay in the sky for a whole day, and the sun would have been right over actually at 12:00 noon — the reason Joshua wanted it that way was because he was fighting five armies and they were climbing up the mountain.  Josh was at the top of the mountain.  If you have the sun at your back, the sun is in the eyes of your enemies, you see.  It was a very strategic move that he made, a militaristic move, to have the sun stay at noon in the sky.

The other thing was that the moon was also in the sky at the same time.  It was like 30 degrees above the horizon.  When Joshua asked for the sun to stay still, he also asked for the moon to stay still.  The sun and the moon are in the sky, almost 90 degrees at an angle, and they’re not moving for a whole day.  How do you explain that?  Some heliocentrists would try to say: It’s just the earth that stopped rotating.  You can’t say that.  The moon also stood still for a whole day in the sky.  The moon moves independently of the sun.  If you stop the earth from rotating, the moon is going to keep on going and it would have gone down into the Mediterranean Sea.  Bellarmine knew this, you see.  He said: Look, this is our strongest verse.  Unless you have an explanation for this geometrically and mathematically and physically, then we have to side with the geocentric view because scripture cannot lie about these things.  It has to tell the truth.  Galileo would say: He didn’t mean it that way.  He wrote a whole treatise on Joshua 10, Galileo did, to try to defend himself.  Bellarmine just shot it down, basically by what I just told you.  Galileo’s case, he didn’t have anything scripturally and he didn’t have anything scientifically.

Basically when they found out that he got this imprimatur by sleight of hand from Father Riccardi, the pope at that time, Pope Urban VIII, got really upset and called Galileo down to Rome from Florence and they put him on trial.  At the end of that trial, under Pope Urban VIII’s vigilance, was that both the heliocentric view and Galileo were condemned.  As a matter of fact, the commission that was assigned by Pope Urban called heliocentrism a formal of heresy.  That’s pretty heavy.  Then Galileo was put under arrest.

The amazing thing about Galileo that everybody should know is that he was not really a practicing Catholic at this time.  He was in an underground movement.  This information just came out in a book written in 2010 by a scholar named Wootton.  He told us that Galileo basically wasn’t a good Catholic but he had a conversion experience in 1639, three years before he died.  It was an overwhelming experience for him.  That’s when he became a true Catholic.  It was just two years after that that Galileo wrote a letter to one of his friends and told him that the whole Copernican system was wrong and that the Church was right.  This letter had been hidden from us for 400 years and just came to the surface in the early 1900s.  I have a copy of it in my book to show people the dramatic change that Galileo went through in his life at the end. [/private]

Andrew Bieszad mentioned the story of St Fernando fighting the Muslim hordes and we carry James Fitzhenry's wonderful biography of Fernando, autographed by the author.
Andrew Bieszad mentioned the story of St Fernando fighting the Muslim hordes and we carry James Fitzhenry’s wonderful biography of Fernando, autographed by the author.

Mike:  So Galileo basically then, he converts before he dies, and then Pope Urban — Pope Urban has found him at fault and said that his work was wrong.  This is where the story starts to get urban legend here and where the pile-on begins.  Did Pope Urban hang Galileo by his toenails?  Did he make him sleep in a bed of snakes?  Did he put him in an iron maiden?  Did he deny him have food and water, as is one of the popular tortures that he underwent for six weeks while he was being interrogated?  Any of that?

Sungenis:  None of that.  As a matter of fact, Galileo lived in the equivalent of the Hilton Hotel for the next years of his life.  He was allowed to do science.  As a matter of fact, he came up with some interesting discoveries around 1636 to ’38.  He was a free man basically, but he was under arrest, but he was treated comfortably.

Mike:  Now we move on from there.  Robert Sungenis is our special guest.  The DVD is available, Galileo Was Wrong.  You can find it on Robert’s site, too.  I’ll give you the current web address, which is

End Mike Church Show Transcript

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