Anne Catherine Emmerich gave many “prophecies”
Several years ago, after visiting the Vatican in Rome, I wondered why Catholics did not seem to be able to understand the Book of Revelation (which they normally call the Apocalypse). This led me to acquire at least two dozen books on Catholic prophecies. Essentially I concluded that even though they do not have to accept “private prophecies”, Rome’s understanding of these “prophecies” has led to misunderstanding much of the Book of Revelation.
Now this is not to say that many “prophecies” have not come to pass (there is a list of those that have in the article Catholic Prophecies: Do They Mirror, Highlight, or Contradict Biblical Prophecies?). It is just that many “prophecies” seem to lead to the conclusion that a militaristic leader rising up in Europe who will destroy all opposition (specifically listed are the English, the Protestants, the Muslims, as well as “all) is a good thing, in contradiction to the Bible which warns against such a leader.
Now it does need to be understood that even The Catholic Encyclopedia teaches that the acceptance of private prophecies is optional:
The Church allows freedom in accepting or rejecting particular or private prophecies according to the evidence for or against them…The minatory prophecies which announce calamities, being for the most part conditional, may or may not be fulfilled. Many private prophecies have been verified by subsequent events, some have not; others have given rise to a good deal of discussion as to their genuineness. Most of the private prophecies of the saints and servants of God were concerned with individuals, their death, recovery from illness, or vocations. Some foretold things which would affect the fate of nations, as France, England, and Ireland. A great number have reference to popes and to the papacy; and finally we have many such prophecies relating to the end of the world and the approach of the Day of Judgment (Devine, Arthur. Transcribed by Marie Jutras. Prophecy. The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume XII. Published 1911. New York: Robert Appleton Company. Nihil Obstat, June 1, 1911. Remy Lafort, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. +John Cardinal Farley, Archbishop of New York).
Hence, Catholics do not need to be looking forward to the one that the Bible refers to as the King of the North.
Yet, it needs to be understood that Roman Catholics believe that their private prophecies are highly important:
Private revelations (i.e. apparitions and locutions with or without prophecies) are those which have been recorded since the days of Christ. Revelations which were recorded up to the days of Christ are known as public, biblical, or scriptural revelations…
Many Catholic devotions are based solely on private revelations: the Rosary, the Sacred Heart, and the Scapular are cases in point. More recently, devotion to Our Lady of Fatima was accepted and encouraged by the Church. (Dupont, Yves. Catholic Prophecy: The Coming Chastisement. TAN Books, Rockford (IL), 1973, p.9).
In other words, even the rosary, one of the foundations of current-day Catholic living, is admitted to have entered the Catholic world through “private revelation” (this particular “revelation” was supposedly given to “St. Dominic” the inquisitor in the early 13th century “as an antidote to heresy and sin”).
Now the following is my own understanding of certain relevant supportive Catholic prophecies in a relatively chronological sequence (some are concurrent) with my comments in italics as to where they are accurate in the sense that they appear to mirror (they are the opposite/reverse) biblical prophecy:
1. There will be a reduction in active Catholics truly practicing the Catholic religion, especially in Europe.
This has occurred to a degree already.
2. This will lead to what some Catholics call the “minor chastisement”. Essentially this chastisement will include serious civil turmoil in Europe.
This possibly may have started with the small riots in Paris in 2005, in Denmark in 2006, Greece in 2008, Latvia in 2009–but much much more devastating riots are expected according to their “prophets”–and biblically this is possible.
3. This will lead to military leaders putting down the riots and minimizing Moslem influence in Europe.
This seems to be biblically essential for certain biblical prophecies to be fulfilled.
4. The one who ultimately emerges as the main military leader will not be widely accepted at first and will probably offend some of the clergy as this new leader will promote a different religious order and claim that it is within Catholicism.
I would tend to consider that this religious order may fulfill Daniel 11:37-39 as it will combine the god of fortresses (the god of the Roman Empire, who is the god of those professing Christian religions that endorse, and often encourage, carnal warfare as acceptable for their followers) and the foreign god that his fathers did not know (probably the new, probably more ecumenical and changed, religious order the King of the North will honor).
5. A pope, who will later do miracles, will crown the military leader as the Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire (most Catholic prophecies consider this pope to be some type of “Holy Pontiff”, while a few consider him to be a false pope). This pope or perhaps his immediate predecessor (who may die in exile while old) is prophesied to bring the Eastern Orthodox back into some communion with Rome. There are Catholic prophecies warning against a future antipope.
We in the Living Church of God would likely call the miracle performing pope the false prophet or final Antichrist. I (and several respected Catholic writers) consider him to be an antipope in the sense that unlike most other pontiffs (who I, and certain respected Catholic scholars, still do not believe are the continuous successors of Peter, see Apostolic Succession and What Do Roman Catholic Scholars Actually Teach About Early Church History?) this one is in direct and close league with the demons. Catholics generally consider that a pontiff in direct/close league with demons would be an antipope. But although there are Catholic prophecies warning against a future antipope, many Catholic will not realize that this miracle performing pontiff is the antipope that some of their writers/prophets have apparently warned about.
6. Many Catholic prophecies refer to the military leader as the “Great Monarch” and be crowned as head of the new Holy Roman Empire. He will put down all then considered by “Catholics” as heresies, including the “secret sect”– a group that denies “the unity of God” and whose plans undermine the revised “Catholic” Church. The Great Monarch will uproot Islam and invade various Arab lands. This time under the Great Monarch certain Catholics indicate will be their “time of peace”.
We in LCG would likely call the military leader the Beast (as well as the King of the North). As discussed throughout this article, we in LCG are probably the group that some Catholics will later claim is the “secret sect” that they have been concerned about rising up. Some Catholic prophecies indicate that the secret sect will cause some clergy and other Catholics to leave the Catholic Church. About the time of the Great Monarch we in LCG will have gotten the Gospel out to more completely fulfill Matthew 24:14, which will lead to persecution from the Beast (which persecution they seem to call putting down heresies) then the end of the Philadelphia church efforts come as the Philadelphians will go to the place of safety. The Catholics suggest that the trinity that they adopted in 381 A.D., which we in LCG deny as they define it (although we do believe in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and accept a certain threeness about God, see Theophilus of Antioch), expresses “the unity of God”. I also believe that carrying out LCG’s plans to restore apostolic Christianity and to proclaim the truth about God’s plan of salvation will be interpreted as undermining Catholicism.
The claimed “time of peace” (when it is not really peace, cf. 1 Thessalonians 5:3) is actually probably just before and after the start of the Great Tribulation that will begin with the destruction of the Anglo-American nations (see Anglo – America in Prophecy & the Lost Tribes of Israel), followed by a “retaliatory” invasion of an Arab-Muslim block (see The Arab World In the Bible, History, and Prophecy), and ultimately the destruction Europe itself (see Europa, the Beast, and Revelation).
7. The combination of the Great Monarch and “Holy Pope” with this new religious order will convert the world to this new brand of Catholicism (false apparitions claiming to be Mary may also play a role, see Mary, the Mother of Jesus and the Apparitions). This will be the last true Roman Empire (one 12th century Catholic leader also called this Empire “Babylon” in a positive light) in which “there will be on earth twelve Kings, one Emperor, one Pope and a few Princes”. Some Roman Catholics believe that this will lead to the final fulfillment Matthew 24:14 as much of the world will then hold to this new order within the name Catholicism.
The Bible teaches that ten kings will give their power to the Beast–I suspect that it starts with 10, but that one or two other kings join later in order to make 12 and/or one or two kingdoms become subdivided into two each).
8. During this time two will preach, one of whom certain “Catholics” will refer to as the false prophet. This “false prophet” will announce that one many Catholics consider to be the Antichrist to come is Christ.
We in LCG will apparently consider that the two who will preach are the two witnesses who will announce that Jesus will come and that there will be a millennial reign of Christ followed by the second resurrection. The one whom we call Jesus, some of the false prophets seem to call the Antichrist (see Do Certain Catholic Prophecies About Antichrist Warn Against Jesus? ).
9. Prior to the coming of the son of perdition, a group of pious people will live in caves and be miraculously taken care of. They are considered servants of the devil as well as his viscera. The mystic Hildegard warned end-time “Catholic” people, over 800 years ago, to stay away from them.
We consider that during the time of the son of perdition, the Philadelphians will be protected in the wilderness and be fed by God–for various reasons, it appears that an area with caves is likely. It is possible that those protected may provide some assistance to the two witnesses.
10. Catholic leaders now denounce the idea of a future millennial reign as well as all other ideas that salvation can come to humans after Jesus returns as heretical doctrines of Antichrist. They will likely claim that ones that they call the “false prophets” cannot be the two witnesses because they normally contend that the two witnesses are Enoch and Elijah (which they sometimes spell as Henoch and Elias) who are still waiting in Paradise to come down to earth.
Since we in LCG teach that Enoch and Elijah are dead, and thus believe that the two witnesses would deny that they came down from Paradise as Enoch and Elijah–this will likely confirm to the Catholics that those that we refer to as the two witnesses will be to them as “false prophets”. This will also be consistent with the improper Catholic view that the millennial teaching is a doctrine of Antichrist. However, certain other Catholics have correctly indicated that the two witnesses can be some other than Enoch and Elijah.
11. Some Catholics seem to believe that many Catholics will fall away from Catholicism (their “great apostasy”) during the end of time of the Great Monarch and this will lead to a “major chastisement” that will result in the destruction of the final Roman Empire and usher in the reign of Antichrist. The Antichrist is specifically prophesied by various Catholics to come immediately at end of the time of the Great Monarch and Holy Pontiff.
The so-called “major chastisement” seems to be what we in LCG call “the day of the Lord”. The one several of their prophets call the Antichrist is the one whom we call Jesus (Do Certain Catholic Prophecies About Antichrist Warn Against Jesus?). Those Catholics that “fall away” from the new ecumenical Catholicism will be likely part of the great multitude that converts to true Christianity during the great tribulation (cf. Revelation 7:9).
12. Although the “Antichrist” may be considered as an antipope (a minority view within Catholicism), certain writings indicate that he may be Jewish. He will either try to establish a new Roman Empire (possibly a minority view within Catholicism) or some type of Jewish Empire. He will insist on a seventh-day Sabbath, eliminate Catholic mass, change (perhaps put back in their original numbering and meaning) the ten commandments, and eliminate all idols. This “Antichrist” will raise the dead, read people’s minds, be able to fly, and will usher in a prosperous age. Determined revisionist end-time Catholics will not accept this one and will wait and fight him and ultimately hope to triumph as Jesus will come.
We in LCG believe that the one some “Catholic” writers teach is Antichrist is really Jesus (Do Certain Catholic Prophecies About Antichrist Warn Against Jesus?), hence this is why they will fight Him upon His return. The prosperous age would then be the millennium, an original doctrine of the early Church that the ecumenically-minded Pope Benedict XVI has repeatedly denounced (see Did The Early Church Teach Millenarianism?).
Since at the time of the end, from a religious perspective it will essentially be God’s Church verses the Church of Antichrist (a changed religion that will likely call itself “Catholic”), I believe that better understanding the Catholics’ past and their prophecies helps LCG better tailor our message so that we will better be able to properly fulfill the first part of Matthew 24:14. I also suspect that our improved future effectiveness in getting the Gospel out (perhaps a very “short work”, see Romans 9:28) will trigger persecution from the Beast and that this causes the end to come (the second part of Matthew 24:14).
Here is a Catholic prophecy that seems to predict that:
Priest Nectou S.J. (d. 1772): They indeed shall conspire for the destruction of the Church; but the time shall not be allowed them, because this frightful crisis shall be for a short duration. When all will be considered lost, all shall be found safe…The triumph of the Church will then be so complete that nothing like it shall ever be seen…A man disliked by France will be placed on the throne…(Culleton, p. 176; cf. Dupont, p. 48).
Perhaps another, semi-official, view of these prophecies by another Catholic, who is Vice President for Theology at EWTN (a Catholic broadcasting organization) might also help show that my understanding of some of these events is consistent with the generally accepted order by some of the Catholics:
The term “endtimes” applies both to the era of Christ’s first coming (Heb 1:2, 1 Cor 10:11, Heb 9:26) and to the events immediately before his return and the end of the ages (Mt 24:13, 2 Tim 2:1, 2 Peter 3:3). The definitive Catholic teaching on the endtimes is contained in the Catechism of the Catholic Church under the discussion of the article of the Creed, “From thence He will come again to judge the living and the dead.” [CCC 668-682]…The Catechism provides us with a general order of events at the End [CCC 673-677]…
Approved Catholic mystics (Venerables, Blessed and Saints, approved apparitions) throw considerable light on this order, by prophesying a minor apostasy and tribulation toward the end of the world, after which will occur the reunion of Christians. Only later will the entire world fall away from Christ (the great apostasy) and the personal Antichrist arise and the Tribulation of the End occur.
Although this is not Catholic doctrine, arising as it does from private revelation, it conforms to what is occurring in our time, especially in light of Our Lady of Fátima’s promise of an “Era of Peace.” This “Triumph of the Immaculate Heart” (other saints have spoken of a social reign of Jesus Christ when Jesus will reign in the hearts of men) would seem to occur prior to the rise of the Antichrist. The optimism of the Pope for the “New Evangelization” and a “Civilization of Love” in the Third Millennium of Christianity fits here, as well. This would place us, therefore, in the period just before the events spoken of in the Catechism, that is, on the verge of the evangelization of the entire world. Other interpretations are possible, but none seem to fit the facts as well, especially when approved mystics are studied, instead of merely alleged ones. (Colin B. Donovan, STL. Endtimes, Millennium, Rapture. http://www.ewtn.com/expert/answers/endtimes.htm viewed 09/27/08)
Thus, even The Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) teaches that Catholics have approved mystics that suggest that a minor apostasy and tribulation (which D. Birch called the “minor chastisement”) will happen that will lead to an “era of peace” (the time dominated by the Great Monarch, which may also be related to the immaculate or sacred heart doctrine) and that shortly thereafter then the one some writers falsely call Antichrist (who is likely Jesus, see Do Certain Catholic Prophecies About Antichrist Warn Against Jesus?) will come.
Yet, we in LCG expect to get Christ’s Gospel of the Kingdom to the world as a witness, suffer persecution, flee during the time that some claim is “the era of peace”, The King of the North/The Beast will reign with the final Antichrist, and Jesus will return to establish His kingdom on earth for a thousand years.
Both views cannot be right. Yet, while we in LCG rely primarily upon the Bible for our understanding of end-time events, most Catholics appear to rely on visions/utterances that seem to take essentially the opposite view of many end-time events (even though some Catholic writings are supportive of the LCG position).
Anyway, I have put together what might be the most extensive article on Catholic prophecies which includes many quotes from mystics, etc. about what many believe will come to pass. It is an eye opening article for those interested in learning some of what will likely be pointed to as the religion of Antichrist rises up. The article is titled Catholic Prophecies: Do They Mirror, Highlight, or Contradict Biblical Prophecies?