sutherland first baptist2

The Texas Church Shooting


Here we go again. No disrespect, but how many of these do we need to experience before we make some substantive changes in this country regarding gun access?


The last publically noted mass shooting was Las Vegas, barely a month ago (there have been several since, but are now so commonplace, most don’t get national attention). That was the worst so far, with 59 dead. This shooting claimed “only” 26 victims, but fortunately for the Media, it still broke a record, as the worst mass shooting to occur in a house of worship. Yes, folks, that’s where we are: we’re now itemizing our kill counts by subclass.


First, the facts, as we know them at this early date. On Sunday 5 November 2017, a masked, black-clad, bulletproof vest-wearing, semiautomatic rifle-toting 26-year-old man opened fire outside the First Baptist Church in tiny Sutherland Springs, Texas, population 400. The shooter, Devin Patrick Kelley, then entered the sanctuary, where he continued his murderous rampage, killing 26, aged five years through 72 (as well as a fetus in utero). Eight of the victims were members of the same family, and the dead constituted fully 7% of the town’s population. Among those killed were a visiting pastor and his wife, and the daughter of the church’s home pastor.


Word of the shooting spread rapidly, and a local man, Johnnie Langendorff, confronted the shooter with rifle fire, whereupon Kelley fled, and was later found dead in his car of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot. The car was loaded with more weaponry, implying that Kelley was prepared to continue his slaughter, and Langendorff has been hailed as a hero for preventing further deaths.


The shooting began at roughly 11:20 AM CST according to local reports, and Kelley’s birth date has been given as 21 February 1991. Comparison of these charts yields stunning, but not unexpected, details about the atrocity.


As always, we begin with the angles. These are the most time-sensitive points in the chart, changing degrees roughly every four minutes, successively highlighting every degree of the zodiac daily, bringing these energies into stark relief. The 12 Capricorn Ascendant highlights Pluto, modern lord of death at 17 Capricorn, and also angular is Uranus, ruling shootings, at 25 Aries on the 19 Aries IC. This brings out the waning square between these two heavy-hitters, which have sparked such a marked increase in mass killings since they began their cosmic square dance in 2012. The angular placement of both bodies reinvigorates the effects of that square, taking us back to the heady heyday of its exactitude, despite the 8-degree separation currently between them.


But more significantly, that 12 Capricorn rising is the exact degree of Kelley’s natal Uranus, indicating explosive, overblown reactions, violence, and the shooting itself. So the timing here is impressive and perfect, from a cosmic standpoint – the chronologic cogs of the universe, like tumblers on a lock, fell into place at the precise moment to highlight, not just the everyday potential for Uranian-style explosions of violence, but that deadly urge in the shooter’s psyche.


The MC/IC axis is no slouch in the “significant factor” department either. Elevated on the 29 Libra Midheaven are asteroids Anubis at 27 Libra and Karma at 2 Scorpio. Anubis is named for the ancient Egyptian deity governing funerary rites, while Karma suggests a date with destiny, a fated moment preordained to unfold. Exactly on the IC is asteroid Patrice at 29 Aries, conjunct Uranus, one of two celestial referents for Patrick, the shooter’s middle name. The other, asteroid Patricia, falls at 3 Capricorn, broadly conjoined the Ascendant.


Patrice is also exactly squared its natal degree in Kelley’s chart, 29 Capricorn, from where it is part of a bundle including asteroid Tantalus at 28 Capricorn, Saturn at 1 Aquarius, and Icarus at 4 Aquarius. Tantalus is a point noted for the commission of heinous crimes, Saturn is the ancient lord of death, and Icarus elicits rash, reckless actions. These points have been transited of late by asteroid Nemesis, currently at 1 Aquarius, establishing Kelley as an agent of retribution, destruction and undoing, including, in this case, his own.


Three of these points, Icarus, Saturn and Tantalus, are once again conjoined in the sky, at 19, 25 and 28 Sagittarius, joined now by TNO Ixion at 24 Sagittarius, and centaur Pholus at 27. Ixion is a point named for the first murderer in Greek myth, and Pholus relates to mass deaths, by whatever cause. These align with an asteroid representing the shooter’s first name, Devonburr, which falls at 24 Sagittarius in his nativity, highlighted here by exact conjunction with transit Ixion the murderer.


Ixion is prominent in the natal chart as well; at 25 Scorpio it bats clean-up on a string of points including PNAs for the shooter: asteroid Devine (for Devin) and Damocles, the doom hanging unseen overhead, both at 12 Scorpio; Kelly at 18 Scorpio, and Pluto, planetary ruler of murder, at 20 Scorpio. This long-lived transit conjunction of Ixion and Pluto in the early ‘90s has yielded quite a tally of mass murderers in recent years, including the shooter in Orlando, Florida, the butcher who shot more than twenty elementary school children in Newtown, Connecticut, and the brothers who perpetrated the Boston Marathon bombing.

devin kelley

Shooter Devin Patrick Kelley.

Kelley’s remaining PNAs are also well in evidence for the shooting. Asteroid Devine at 9 Aries is closely opposed transit Mars at 8 Libra, ruling guns, attacks and violent deaths. This is T-Squared by centaur Pholus in Kelley’s natal chart, at 9 Cancer, indicating mass casualties. Asteroid Patricia at 3 Capricorn, mentioned briefly above, conjoins Kelley’s natal asteroid Requiem, named for the funeral mass for the dead, at 2 Capricorn. Asteroid Kelly (phonetic match for surname Kelley) at 4 Leo is exactly sextile the 4 Gemini Moon and squared to transit Jupiter at 5 Scorpio, bringing fame to the shooter. That Moon is also squared to Kelley’s natal Sun at 2 Pisces, with Kelly inconjunct. Asteroid Kelley (matching the actual spelling of his last name) falls at 26 Leo, trine the transit Saturn stellium, opposing transit Damocles at 21 Aquarius (much like they are conjoined in the birth chart, bringing that “unsuspected doom” potential into manifestation) and squared his natal Ixion at 25 Scorpio, identifying him as a murderer.


In addition to the natal Kelly/Ixion signature mentioned above, natal asteroid Kelley at 15 Gemini conjoins Mars at 10 Gemini, suggesting a volatile, aggressive nature (Kelley was dishonorably discharged from the service for acts of domestic violence), and natal Atropos at 18 Gemini, once again identifying him as a potential agent of death.


Two stunning exact conjunctions define the locale for the atrocity. Asteroids Texas and Atropos are together at 22 Virgo, squaring the transit Saturn stellium described above; Atropos is named for the mythic Greek Fate who severs the thread of life at death.   Transit asteroid Devonburr at 22 Taurus is exactly trined Texas/Atropos, and in a Grand Trine with Pluto. Asteroids Suthers and Rip are also in exact conjunction at 17 Libra, exactly squared Pluto; Suthers is our celestial stand-in for the community, Sutherland Springs, and Rip is a reliable indicator of death, based in the acronym RIP, “Rest In Peace”, a common tombstone inscription.


Asteroid Atropos in Kelley’s natal chart falls at 18 Gemini, opposing the transit Saturn stellium. It is stationary direct, still at the degree where it turned two weeks before Kelley’s birth, and opposing natal asteroid Devonburr at 24 Sagittarius, as well as conjoined Kelley. This identifies “death” as a leading influence in Devin Kelley’s life, a still point upon which the rest of the chart revolves, as well as tapped strongly into his own PNAs. Asteroid Texas at 28 Aries in Kelley’s chart conjoins asteroid Lachesis, named for the mythic Greek Fate who determines the span of life, at 29 Aries. If this degree sounds familiar, it should – it’s the exact degree of the IC for the shooting, exactly conjoined by transit asteroid Patrice!


Kelley’s natal Suthers at 19 Capricorn is part of a trio with Neptune at 15 and Uranus at 12 Capricorn, bringing together themes of shooting (Uranus ) and religion (Neptune) with the venue, all the more remarkable as, so far, investigators have no idea why Kelley made the forty mile drive to that particular church to enact his killing spree. These points were all conjunct the Ascendant for the shooting, and Suthers was visited by an exact conjunction from Pluto at its most recent retrograde station, in April of 2016. By transit Lachesis is exactly conjoined Neptune at 11 Pisces, once again bringing together themes of life span and religious worship.


Natal Rip, incredibly, is at 29 Libra, the exact degree of the shooting MC, and it is also stationary! Rip turned retrograde eight days before Kelley’s birth, and remains at its station degree in the nativity. The exact natal opposition from Rip to Lachesis, exactly chimed by the transit MC/IC axis, is an astounding example of celestial synchronicity and timing.


Asteroid Gunn is also highlighted. The transit Sun at 13 Scorpio exactly opposes Kelley’s natal Gunn at 13 Taurus, while transit Mercury (news) at 29 Scorpio is closely opposed transit Gunn at 27 Taurus. These form a Grand Cross with the transit Kelley/Damocles opposition.


Johnnie Langendorff, whose brave counter assault on the shooter may have saved lives.

The heroic Johnnie Langendorff is represented as well. In the shooting chart, asteroid Johnny at 0 Aquarius is running with Nemesis at 1 Aquarius, marking Johnnie Langendorff as a potential disrupter of Kelley’s plans, someone who blocks his progress of defeats his aims. Incredibly, this same potential exists in the natal chart, with asteroid Johney at 11 Libra opposed Nemesis at 15 Aries, and Johnny at 21 Capricorn more broadly squared it. Note also that natal Johney impinges on transit Mars opposed Devine, further frustrating Kelley’s specific intent.


As of this writing (early AM November 6), the victims’ names have not been released. As a veteran of far too many of these atrocities, I have no doubt that their PNAs will also fit snugly into the patterns for the day, and in the chart of the shooter. I just don’t think I’ll have the heart to chronicle it.



Alex Miller is a professional writer and astrologer, author of The Black Hole Book, detailing deep space points in astrological interpretation, and the forthcoming Heaven on Earth, a comprehensive study of asteroids, both mythic and personal. Alex is a frequent contributor to “The Mountain Astrologer”, “Daykeeper Journal”, and NCGR’s Journals and “Enews Commentary”; his work has also appeared in “Aspects” magazine, “Dell Horoscope”, “Planetwaves”, “Neptune Café” and “Sasstrology.” He is a past president of Philadelphia Astrological Society, and a former board member for the Philadelphia Chapter of NCGR.

2 comments, add yours.

Fletcher Dale

Another grand effort of observation Alex, thank you

    Alex Miller


    thanks, Fletcher – glad you appreciated it! an awful story, but astrologically, very revealing.

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