Prophecy Properly Understood

 

WE are living in a time when prophecy has perhaps never been so important, and yet, so misunderstood by the vast majority of Catholics. There are three harmful positions being taken today regarding prophetic or “private” revelations that, I believe, are doing at times great damage in many quarters of the Church. One is that “private revelations” never have to be heeded since all we are obligated to believe is the definitive Revelation of Christ in the “deposit of faith.” Another harm being done is by those who tend to not only put prophecy above the Magisterium, but give it the same authority as Sacred Scripture. And last, there is the position that most prophecy, unless uttered by saints or found without error, should be mostly shunned. Again, all these positions above carry unfortunate and even dangerous pitfalls.

 

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Unbelievable Odds

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for December 16th, 2013

Liturgical texts here


Christ in the Temple,
by Heinrich Hoffman

 

 

WHAT would you think if I could tell you who the President of the United States will be five hundred years from now, including what signs will precede his birth, where he will be born, what his name will be, what family line he will descend from, how he will be betrayed by a member of his cabinet, for what price, how he will be tortured, the method of execution, what those around him will say, and even with whom he will be buried. The odds of getting every single one of these projections right are astronomical.

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The Blessed Prophecy

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for December 12th, 2013
Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Liturgical texts here
(Selected: Rev 11:19a, 12:1-6a, 10ab; Judith 13; Luke 1:39-47)

Jump for Joy, by Corby Eisbacher

 

SOMETIMES when I’m speaking at conferences, I will look into the crowd and ask them, “Do you want to fulfill a 2000 year old prophecy, right here, right now?” The response is usually an excited yes! Then I’d say, “Pray with me the words”:

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The Survivors

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for December 2nd, 2013

Liturgical texts here

 

 

THERE are some texts in Scripture that, admittedly, are troubling to read. Today’s first reading contains one of them. It speaks of a coming time when the Lord will wash away “the filth of the daughters of Zion”, leaving behind a branch, a people, who are His “luster and glory.”

…the fruit of the earth will be honor and splendor for the survivors of Israel. He who remains in Zion and he who is left in Jerusalem will be called holy: every one marked down for life in Jerusalem. (Isaiah 4:3)

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Prophecy, Popes, and Piccarreta


Prayer, by Michael D. O’Brien

 

 

SINCE the abdication of Peter’s seat by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, there have been many questions surrounding private revelation, some prophecies, and certain prophets. I will attempt to answer those questions here…

I. You occasionally refer to “prophets.” But didn’t prophecy and the line of prophets end with John the Baptist?

II. We don’t have to believe in any private revelation though, do we?

III. You wrote recently that Pope Francis is not an “anti-pope”, as a current prophecy alleges. But wasn’t Pope Honorius a heretic, and therefore, couldn’t the current pope be the “False Prophet”?

IV. But how can a prophecy or prophet be false if their messages ask us to pray the Rosary, Chaplet, and partake in the Sacraments?

V. Can we trust the prophetic writings of the Saints?

VI. How come you do not write more about Servant of God Luisa Piccarreta?

 

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The Question on Questioning Prophecy


The “empty” Chair of Peter, St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome, Italy

 

THE past two weeks, the words keep rising in my heart, “You have entered dangerous days…” And for good reason.

The enemies of the Church are many from both within and without. Of course, this is nothing new. But what is new is the current zeitgeist, the prevailing winds of intolerance toward Catholicism on a near global scale. While atheism and moral relativism continue to strike at the hull of the Barque of Peter, the Church is not without her internal divisions.

For one, there is building steam in some quarters of the Church that the next Vicar of Christ will be an anti-pope. I wrote about this in Possible… or Not? In response, the bulk of letters I’ve received are grateful for clearing the air on what the Church teaches and for putting an end to tremendous confusion. At the same time, one writer accused me of blasphemy and putting my soul at risk; another of overstepping my bounds; and yet another saying that my writing on this was more of a danger to the Church than the actual prophecy itself. While this was going on, I had evangelical Christians reminding me that the Catholic Church is Satanic, and traditionalist Catholics saying I was damned for following any pope after Pius X.

No, it is not surprising that a pope has resigned. What is surprising is that it took 600 years since the last one.

I am reminded again of Blessed Cardinal Newman’s words that are now blasting like a trumpet above the earth:

Satan may adopt the more alarming weapons of deceit—he may hide himself—he may attempt to seduce us in little things, and so to move the Church, not all at once, but by little and little from her true position… It is his policy to split us up and divide us, to dislodge us gradually from our rock of strength. And if there is to be a persecution, perhaps it will be then; then, perhaps, when we are all of us in all parts of Christendom so divided, and so reduced, so full of schism, so close upon heresy… and Antichrist appear as a persecutor, and the barbarous nations around break in. —Venerable John Henry Newman, Sermon IV: The Persecution of Antichrist

 

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The Sixth Day


Photo by EPA, at 6pm in Rome, February 11th, 2013

 

 

FOR some reason, a deep sorrow came over me in April of 2012, which was immediately after the Pope’s trip to Cuba. That sorrow culminated in a writing three weeks later called Removing the Restrainer. It speaks in part about how the Pope and the Church are a force restraining the “lawless one,” the Antichrist. Little did I or hardly anyone know that the Holy Father decided then, after that trip, to renounce his office, which he did this past February 11th of 2013.

This resignation has brought us closer to the threshold of the Day of the Lord…

 

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The Pope: Thermometer of Apostasy

BenedictCandle

As I asked Our Blessed Mother to guide my writing this morning, immediately this meditation from March 25th, 2009 came to mind:

 

HAVING traveled and preached in over 40 American states and nearly all of Canada’s provinces, I have been afforded a wide-ranging glimpse of the Church on this continent. I have met many wonderful lay people, deeply committed priests, and devoted and reverent religious. But they have become so few in number that I am beginning to hear the words of Jesus in a new and startling way:

When the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?(Luke 18:8)

It is said that if you throw a frog into boiling water, it will jump out. But if you slowly heat the water, it will remain in the pot and boil to death. The Church in many parts of the world is beginning to reach the boiling point. If you want to know how hot the water is, watch the attack upon Peter.

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The Coming Counterfeit

The Mask, by Michael D. O’Brien

 

THE warning in my heart continues to grow about a coming deception, which may in fact be the one described in 2 Thess 2:11-13. What follows after the so-called “illumination” or “warning” is not only a brief but powerful period of evangelization, but a dark counter-evangelization that will, in many ways, be just as convincing. Part of the preparation for that deception is knowing beforehand that it is coming:

Indeed, the Lord GOD does nothing without revealing his plan to his servants, the prophets… I have said all this to you to keep you from falling away. They will put you out of the synagogues; indeed, the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God. And they will do this because they have not known the Father, nor me. But I have said these things to you, that when their hour comes you may remember that I told you of them. (Amos 3:7; John 16:1-4)

Satan not only knows what is coming, but has been planning for it for a long time. It is exposed in the language being used…Continue reading

When Cedars Fall

 

Wail, you cypress trees, for the cedars are fallen,
the mighty have been despoiled. Wail, you oaks of Bashan,
for the impenetrable forest is cut down!
Hark! the wailing of the shepherds,
their glory has been ruined. (Zech 11:2-3)

 

THEY have fallen, one by one, bishop after bishop, priest after priest, ministry after ministry (not to mention, father after father and family after family). And not just little trees—major leaders in the Catholic Faith have fallen like great cedars in a forest.

In a glance over just the past three years, we have seen a stunning collapse of some of the tallest figures in the Church today. The answer for some Catholics has been to hang up their crosses and "quit" the Church; others have taken to the blogosphere to vigorously raze the fallen, while others have engaged in haughty and heated debates in the plethora of religious forums. And then there are those who are quietly weeping or merely sitting in stunned silence as they listen to the echo of these sorrows reverberating throughout the world.

For months now, the words of Our Lady of Akita—given official recognition by no less than the present Pope when he was still Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith—have been faintly repeating themselves in the back of my mind:

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