Astronomical Thoughts About the Star of Bethlehemwith Dr. Maurice Snook

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 3, from 7:00 to 8:30 PM ESTA Zoom Presentation – Free and open to the public.

For centuries, astronomers and laymen alike have wondered about the Star of Bethlehem.  Was it a nova, comet, planetary conjunction or an inexplicable miracle?Dr. Snook will use Scripture, paintings, personal photographs, postage stamps and astronomical calculations to investigate the possible celestial phenomena that scholars and astronomers posit may explain the event.

To register, e-mail the host to be placed on the Zoom invitation list:


Dr. Maurice Snook earned a B.S. in Chemistry from Drexel University, Philadelphia in 1967 and a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from The Pennsylvania State University (1971).  He was employed by the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Russell Research Center, here in Athens from 1973 until his retirement in 2010.  

Maurice has been an avid amateur astronomer for over 65 years.  In that time he has founded two astronomy clubs and served as president of three clubs; taught astronomy in Clarke County Talented and Gifted (TAG) program; organized numerous astronomy exhibits, talks, and observing sessions at area schools, festivals, and state parks; lectured on solar eclipse safety at local schools and libraries; authored a weekly Halley’s Comet column for Athens-Banner Herald, and has assisted Sandy Creek Nature Center/Park coordinate quarterly Star Watches every year since 1980. He also taught an astronomy course for the University of Georgia’s, Continuing Educational Program for over 5 years and recently in the OLLI Program.  

He and his wife, Caren, have personally observed 6 total solar eclipses and two annular eclipses.  His solar eclipse photo appeared in the World Book Encyclopedia (1974-2009) and others have been included in several textbooks and periodicals. Best of all for us at Friendship Church, Maurice has been a member of Friendship since 1978 and has served as head usher for over 30 years!