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Christian Answers for the New Age (CANA) provides answers -- from a Christian perspective -- to issues concerning New Age teachings and practices, today's 'pick and choose' spirituality and the occult.
It is an authoritative site, owned and operated by Marcia Montenegro, a former professional astrologer for 8 years and teacher of astrology; a former practitioner for many years of Eastern-type meditation and beliefs, and who engaged in various occult practices such as having a spirit guide and doing astral travel. 
Before becoming an astrologer, Marcia was involved with various New Age, occult, and Eastern beliefs and practices, including Inner Light Consciousness, Tibetan Buddhism, Zen Buddhism, Hindu teachings and meditation, and psychic development classes. During these years, she also participated in past life regression, numerology, Tarot cards, spirit contact, seances, astral travel, and received a spirit guide through a guided visualization.
Being an astrologer and involved in the New Age/ occult community gave Marcia a diversity of friends and astrological clients including witches/pagans; New Age healers; psychics; palm readers and card readers; Sufis; followers of Rajneesh, Sai Baba, Muktananda, Maharaji, and other gurus; Hare Krishna devotees; est and Silva Mind trainees; and others. Through these contacts and her own experiences, she became familiar with a wide spectrum of beliefs and practices that were an intrinsic part of the New Age and occult community.
- Source: Marcia's Background Accessed Dec. 17, 2007
In other words, unlike many who write about such subjects, Marcia speaks from personal experience.
Spirit guides, meditation, astrology, the "higher Self," raising the kundalini, developing psychic abilities, praying to gurus, astral travel, numerology, Tarot cards, contacting the dead, hanging out with witches, Sufis, followers of Muktananda, Rajneesh, Sai Baba, Maharaji, -- all these and more were part of my journey. How did I get on this path?
I grew up with an agnostic father and a mother who was raised going to church. My sister and I had to attend church, because my mother thought that was the right thing to do, although she did not always go. Due to my father’s job in the Foreign Service, we moved around a lot, so we ended up in different churches located overseas and in the Washington, DC, area. Eventually, I became serious about religion. In high school, I had the idea that being good would please God and get me into heaven. But reading about other religions and meeting those who believed differently made me wonder. Maybe there was more to it than what I had -- some knowledge of God and Jesus which was mostly superficial. I wanted something deeper, more experiential. I was also rejecting the idea of hell and was disillusioned with Christians. Christianity seemed defined by sermons, going to Sunday School, and doing good works. How boring! I was missing out on something! Also, I never fit in during my high school years. Being someone who wrote poetry, being in an alcoholic home, having no real roots all combined to make me feel different and unlike other people. I started my journey at the end of high school.
That journey continued through college where I had paranormal experiences, made friends with someone who said she saw auras, and attended spiritualist meetings where the ministers received messages from the dead. One bright sunny Florida afternoon, as I rested on my bed fully awake with eyes partly closed, I felt myself floating. I opened my eyes and was stunned to see my body on the bed below me as I hovered near the ceiling. I thought I had died. The shock slammed me back into my body in an almost painful way. This was my first out-of-body experience and I had no idea what it was or that it even had a name. I told no one about it.
The journey stretched into the 70's when I visited psychics and an astrologer, and did a lot of reading on the paranormal, and about Hindu and Buddhist beliefs. I remember reading a book on Vedanta (sect of Hinduism) each morning in the cafeteria of the building where I worked. I started to see connections in my life with the colors of the chakras, the seven psychic centers of energy in the body according to Hindu beliefs. This and other experiences pushed me into an active plunge into the alluring worlds of the paranormal and Eastern beliefs.
- Source: Marcia's Story: A Strange But True Spiritual Journey Accesses Dec. 17, 2007
Marcia's fascinating story is recounted in greater detail in Chapter 10 of The Unexpected Journey: Conversations with People Who Turned from Other Beliefs to Jesus, by Thom S. Rainer.
Since becoming a Christian, Marcia has been on several radio shows, including “Unshackled!,” Bill Bright’s “WorldChangers,” “Janet Parshall’s America,” and the “Dawson McAllister Live” show for teenagers. She has also been on Christian television, including having her testimony dramatized on Dr. D. James Kennedy’s show. She has led workshops and spoken at conferences, churches and retreats, and written for Christian publications. Marcia is the author of SpellBound: The Paranormal Seduction of Today's Kids (Cook, 2006).
Marcia’s ministry is CANA/Christian Answers for the New Age, and she is a missionary with Fellowship International Mission, an independent mission board based in Allentown, PA. CANA is an informational and outreach ministry.
- Source: Marcia's Background Accessed Dec. 17, 2007
Christian Answers for the New Age, headed by Marcia Montenegro, is among the organizations, ministries and individual cult experts/counselors recommended by Apologetics Index. See also our Guidelines for Selecting a Cult Expert/Counselor.
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