Could the next pope be the last pope?

According to a 12th-century prophecy the next pope will be the last pope.

The Last Pope?

Lightning strikes St. Peter’s Basilica. Photo by Alessandro Di Meo/Reuters

Pope Benedict has stunned his closest advisers and Roman Catholics around the world by announcing that he will resign at the end of February this year. The last pope to abdicate his office was Gregory XII who did so begrudgingly in 1415 in order to end the Western Schism, which had reached a climactic point of three Popes laying claim to the papal throne.

The actual term “abdicate” is not used in the official papers of the Catholic Church for a pope’s resignation. As the pope is considered to be the supreme authority over the Catholic Church, there is no procedure in place for his voluntary relinquishment of the papal office.  However, reference is made to the voluntary resignation of the papal chair in Canon 332 (Canon Law of the Catholic Church), where it states:

If it should happen that the Roman Pontiff resigns his office (munus), it is required for validity that he make the resignation freely and that it be duly manifested, but not that it be accepted by anyone.

It seems that this will be the procedures by which Pope Benedict XVI will leave office, for this appears to be the only positions for the Catholic Church to take.

I am sure that everyone has noticed the rising popularity that region has taken in the past decade. At the rate it is growing, it would seem quite striking for even a casual observer of religion and world trends.

Pope BenedictMany people are asking why the pope is stepping down. Countless are trusting that such an extraordinary event cannot be without significance.

Part of Benedict XVI’s statement reads,

After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry…In today’s world, subject to so many rapid changes and shaken by questions of deep relevance for the life of faith, in order to govern the bark of Saint Peter and proclaim the Gospel, both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognise my incapacity to adequately fulfil the ministry entrusted to me.

Among those that study the Bible it has been held for centuries that the head demon which is administering over world religion is holding the seat of the papacy until the time that Satan is ready to come down and take full control of this world. At that time, the second in command will step aside to let Satan have the seat of the papacy.

Here of late many have been watching the Pope because of the prophecies of a 12th century Irish man named Malachy O’Morgair (1094-1148). He was Archbishop of Armagh, Ireland, and is known to Catholics as St. Malachy. Tradition holds that one day while he was on a journey to visit Pope Innocent II in Rome in 1139, Malachy had a vision of all the popes who would reign; from the present to the destruction of the city of Rome.  He also gave a brief description of the nature of their tenure or some notable sign by which they could be marked. Not much attention was given to his vision until striking similarities were noticed; similarities which were too odd to be coincidental. In all, Malachy claimed there would be 112 to ascend to the papal throne.

Since the prophecy, there have been 111, counting Benedict XVI.

Malachy’s prediction started to gain new momentum when people begin to believe that the world had arrived at the end time, and particular notice was given to the fact the time seemed to correspond with the number of popes that Malachy said would arrive. As time continued it came down to one pope left after Benedict XVI.

The following are prophecies regarding the last six popes:

107th: Paſtor & nauta (Shepherd and sailor). Pope John XXIII (1958–1963) was the Patriarch of Venice, a maritime city and a former naval power, from 1953 until 1958 when he was elected Pope.

108th: Flos florum (Flower of flowers). Paul VI (1963–1978); his coat of arms consisted of three fleurs-de-lis (iris blossoms).

109th: De medietate lunæ (From the midst of the moon). Pope John Paul I (1978); his month-long reign began with the moon half-full and ended with it the same.

110th: De labore solis (From the labour of the sun). Pope John Paul II (1978–2005) was born (18 May 1920) on the day of a solar eclipse on May 18, 1920, and he was entombed on Friday April 8, 2005, also on the day of a solar eclipse. Tony Allan Writing before that second eclipse occur, said “that attempts to find a connection between ‘from the labour of the sun’ and John Paul II ‘by pointing out that he came from Krakow, the birth place of Copernicus, who first expounded the Earth’s solar orbit, seem forced”.

111th: Gloria olivæ (Glory of the olive). Benedict XVI (2005–2013) chose the regnal name Benedict after St Benedict of Nursia, who was the founder of the Benedictine Order. The order’s crest contains an olive branch, and the Order of St. Benedict has said for hundreds of years that the 111th Pope will come from their order. It has been thought for years that this Pope will reign at a time that the world sinks into great tribulation, and some have even claimed it would be the beginning of the tribulation

112th: This is the final and lengthiest prophecy:

In pſecutione extre-

ma S.R.E. ſedebit.

Petrus Romanus, qui

paſcet oues in mul-

tis tribulationibus:

quibus tranſactis ci-

uitas ſepticollis di-

ruetur, & Iudex tre

mdus iudicabit po

pulum ſuum. Finis.

This translates into English as:

“In the extreme persecution of the Holy Roman Church, there will sit [i.e., as bishop]Peter the Roman, who will pasture his sheep in many tribulations:

and when these things are finished, the city of seven hills will be destroyed,

and the terrible judge will judge his people.

The End.”

(For a full list of the prophecy of Malachy see this link.)

The destruction that he mentions here is believed to be the same one spoken of in the book of Revelation by John:  “Then I heard another voice from heaven say:

“‘Come out of her, my people,’   so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues; for her sins are piled up to heaven, and God has remembered her crimes. Give back to her as she has given; pay her back double for what she has done.  Pour her a double portion from her own cup. Give her as much torment and grief   as the glory and luxury she gave herself. In her heart she boasts,  ‘I sit enthroned as queen. I am not a widow; I will never mourn.’ Therefore in one day her plagues will overtake her: death, mourning and famine. She will be consumed by fire, for mighty is the Lord God who judges her. Threefold Woe Over Babylon’s Fall “When the kings of the earth who committed adultery with her and shared her luxury see the smoke of her burning, they will weep and mourn over her. Terrified at her torment, they will stand far off and cry:

 “‘Woe! Woe to you, great city,

    you mighty city of Babylon!

In one hour your doom has come!’”

Seeing the escalation in violence and the sodomite condition that was forespoken by Christ has caused many to wonder whether we are at the end time. Preachers across the world are proclaiming that the time of Armageddon is at hand. The changes in the weather that were prophesied as a sign of the end have reached such an undeniable point that we have men like Al Gore saying, “the weather patterns of the world today look as if we are taking a walk through the book of Revelation”. Mingled along with the current state of the church, which was always believed to be a harbinger of the end time, many are convinced that we have arrived at the end.

Now, what is triggering an even greater commotion is the fact that within hours of Pope Benedict XVI announcing his resignation, lightning struck St Peter’s Basilica.

Lightning strike St. Peter's Basilica. Photo by Alessandro Di meo/Reuters

Lightning strike in St. Peter’s Basilica. Photo by Alessandro Di Meo/Reuters

Revelation 12 tells of a time when Satan, which stands in heaven accusing all of God’s children of misdoings, will be cast out. At that time the world will turn into a war zone and coalesce around a final buildup: Armageddon. The Bible says,Neither was there place found any more in heaven.  And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceived the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.”

 It then tells how Christ will overcome the world alliance against Him, saying “Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ.”

As it continues it tells of what a woeful time it will be to all of those who are found outside of Christ saying: “For the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night… Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and of the sea! For the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has but a short time.”

In Luke 10:18 Jesus said, I saw Satan fall from heaven like lightning.” Has Satan come down to earth to take control of the world systems? Will this be the last pope? If the signs of the times are any indication, it does not look good for the inhabitants of the world.

So could this be the last Pope?

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