Ecumenical Pope Francis facing opposition from Catholic prelates

Pope Francis


Pope Francis is facing opposition from other leaders in the Church of Rome:

For Pope Francis, A Year Of Reconciliation Abroad Amid Opposition At Home

December 25, 2016

The thrust of Francis’ international outreach this year was ecumenism — what’s known as Christian unity.

In Cuba, he met Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill — an encounter his two predecessors had tried in vain to achieve. Francis also went to the migration crisis front line, the Greek island of Lesbos, together with the Orthodox Patriarch of Constantinople to underscore the dignity of refugees.

The pope’s most recent trip, in October, was to Sweden, where in a joint ceremony with Lutherans, he commemorated the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. …

Amoris Laetitia, The Joy of LoveFrancis’ meditation on marriage, sex and the family — contains a footnote that seemingly opens a crack in the door allowing some divorced and civilly remarried Catholics in certain situations to receive the sacraments.

Four cardinals, most of them retired, wrote a highly publicized letter demanding that the pope clarify the magisterium — church teaching — on the indissolubility of marriage.

One of the signatories, American Cardinal Raymond Burke, voiced his dismay in an interview with, a conservative Catholic website.

“It’s very dangerous now that people simply say that they accept everything in Amoris Laetitia as magisterium,” Burke said. “Well, it is not, this is a very serious matter that needs to be addressed.”

Papal biographer Politi says these cardinals can speak out because they have few official responsibilities. Behind them, he notes, lies a broad, hidden opposition to Francis within the hierarchy.

“The practical impact of this is to de-legitimize his activity,” he says. “This opposition is trying to influence already the next conclave.”

On a related note, a reader sent me a link to the following:

Pope Francis’ Reported Words: “I Might Go Down in History for Having Split the Catholic Church”

DER SPIEGEL, a very influential German publication, published an article about the manifest current crisis in the Church, to include a growing resistance to Pope Francis’ proposed and actual reforms. At the end of this article its author, the Spiegel’s Correspondent in Italy, Walter Mayr, reveals an important new leak:

In a very small circle, Pope Francis is said to have self-critically further explained himself as follows: “It is not to be excluded that I will enter history as the one who split the Catholic Church.” [my emphasis]

In light of this self-revealing comment, it is worth quoting some other parts of this article which shows just how much open and smoldering indignation Pope Francis has caused within the Catholic Church. Mayr describes the atmosphere in the Vatican with critical words, as follows:

It is Saturday morning last week, shortly after eight, in the Pauline Chapel of the Vatican. A group of fifty cardinals now living in Rome – purple elegant robes and purple caps as far as the eye can see – has appeared in order to honor Pope Francis with a common concelebrated Mass, on the occasion of his 80th birthday. As they sit there under the fresco of Michelangelo depicting the crucifixion of Peter, the dignitaries have their eyes on the powerful man to the left of the altar – and the estrangement can nearly be palpably grasped with one’s hands. “Be assured that we are close to you,” says the cardinal deacon [Cardinal Angelo Sodano] to Francis – but this reassurance sounds strangely hollow.

As the article’s author also says, Cardinal Walter Brandmüller, who lives in Rome, had excused himself from this celebration, however, due to his frailty; but he had sent Pope Francis a congratulatory letter.

In the following, Mayr also describes the events surrounding the dubia of the Four Cardinals, with Pope Francis’ decision not to respond to the letter containing their doubts concerning his promulgated document Amoris Laetitia. The author even calls the pope’s decision not at all to respond his own “highest penalty.” In Mayr’s eyes, Pope Francis apparently feels wounded by all these events, as became quite discernible when he spoke at his address to the Roman Curia yesterday about those “evil forms of resistance” that aim at accusing him personally by way of specious reference to traditions and formalities.

With reference to Edward Pentin, the well-known Vatican specialist, Mayr says: “The pope is boiling and fuming.” 12/23/16

As far as Amoris Laetitia goes, I felt so strongly it was wrong that we even put together a video about it: Pope Francis’ Tolerance of Immorality is Not Biblical.

As far as splitting the Church of Rome goes, there are a lot of Catholic writings that state that will happen. Notice the following which are in my book The Last Pope Do Biblical and Catholic Prophecies Point to Pope Francis? :

Catholic Prophets/Writers Have Warned that a Major “Antipope” is to Come

Various Catholic prophecies warn that a major “antipope” and major schism is to come.  Since there has not been an antipope since the 15th century, for numerous reasons these could be interpreted to mean that a 21st century pope will be an antipope who will implement changes:

Anne Catherine Emmerick (May 13, 1820): I saw again a new and odd-looking Church which they were trying to build. There was nothing holy about it…THIS IS BABEL.

Yves Dupont {writer interpreting A. Emmerick}: They wanted to make a new Church, a Church of human manufacture, but God had other designs…The Holy Father shall have to leave Rome, and he shall die a cruel death. An anti-pope shall be set up in Rome.

Anne Catherine Emmerich (January 12, 1820):  There is now some question of Protestants sharing in the government of the Catholic clergy.

Anne Catherine Emmerich (July 1820):  I came to the church of Peter and Paul (Rome) and saw a dark world of distress, confusion, and corruption…

Anne Catherine Emmerich (January 27, 1822):  I saw many Christians returning to the bosom of the Church, entering through the walls.  That Pope will be strict, he will remove the lukewarm, tepid Bishops—but it will be a long time before this happens.

Anne Catherine Emmerich (October 22, 1822): I saw in Germany among the worldly-wise ecclesiastics, and enlightened Protestants, plans formed for the blending of all religious creeds…

Anne Catherine Emmerich (April, 1823): They built a large, singular, extravagant church which was to embrace all creeds with equal rights: Evangelicals, Catholics, and all denominations, a true communion of the unholy with one shepherd and one flock.  There was to be a Pope, a salaried Pope without possessions.

Melanie Mathieu (19th century): Rome will lose faith and become the seat of Antichrist.

Jeanne le Royer (died 1798): I see that when the Second Coming of Christ approaches a bad priest will do much harm to the Church.

St. Gregory the Great, Pope (d. 604): In those days, near the end…an army of priests and two-thirds of the Christians will join the Schism.

Yves Dupont {reader and collector of Catholic prophecies}: “prophecies are quite explicit about the election of an anti-pope…Many prophecies predict an anti-pope and a schism “.

Catholic priest and writer R. Gerald Culleton (20th century): A schism of short duration is destined to break out…An antipope, of German origin, is to be set up, and finally Rome itself will be destroyed”.

Frederick William Faber (died 1863): Antichrist…Many believe in a demonical incarnation–this will not be so–but he will be utterly possessed…His doctrine as apparent contradiction of no religion, yet a new religion…He has an attending pontiff, so separating regal and prophetic office.

Blessed Joachim (died 1202): Towards the end of the world Antichrist will overthrow the Pope and usurp his See.

Merlin (7th century): There will come a German Anti-Pope. Italy and Germany will be sorely troubled. A French King will restore the true Pope.

St. Francis of Assisi (died 1226): There will be an uncanonically elected pope who will cause a great Schism, there will be divers thoughts preached which will cause many, even those in the different orders, to doubt, yea even agree with those heretics which will cause My order to divide, then will there be such universal dissentions and persecutions that if these days were not shortened even the elect would be lost.

Capuchin Friar (18th century): During these calamities the Pope shall die…three popes shall be simultaneously elected…the third…by force of arms, shall be placed on the throne.

Priest E. Sylvester Berry (published 1920):  It has been a matter of history that the most disastrous periods for the Church were times when the Papal throne was vacant or when anti-popes contended with the legitimate head of the Church.  Thus shall it be in those evil days to come.

Catholic writer and priest P. Huchedé (19th century): …the false prophet…will not be a king, nor a general of an army, but a clever apostate, fallen from episcopal dignity.  From being an apostle of the Gospel he will become the first preacher of the false messiah…

Priest Herman Kramer (20th century): This false prophet possibly at the behest of Antichrist usurps the papal supremacy.

Catholic writers Ted and Maureen Flynn (1993): Catholic prophecy warns us of severe problems threatening the papacy in these end times…An Antipope will seize papal authority…It will be those who hold fast to the truths of the faith who will be labelled as the perpetuators of this horrible schism, according to some visionaries.

Priest Paul Kramer reported: In 1999…Malachi Martin stated…that Our Lady’s words were very dry and specific and they foretold of a future “pope” (not the true Pope, but a heretical antipope) who would be completely under the control of the devil.

Priest Paul Kramer (21st century): The errors of Orthodoxy and of Protestantism will be embraced by that false church, it will be an ecumenical church because the Anti-Pope will be recognized by the world — not by the faithful, but by the world — by the secular world and the secular governments. The Anti-Pope will be recognized as the legitimate Pope of the “church,” and the legitimate head of the Vatican State. That “church” will be united with all the false religions.

Priest Paul Kramer (21st century): The counterfeit “Catholic” Church — the counter-church, the anti-church — the mystery of the dragon, whose tail swept down a third of the “stars of Heaven,” i.e. one third of the Catholic hierarchy under the leadership of a heretical antipope.

Priest Herman Kramer (20th century): In accord with the text this is unmistakably a PAPAL ELECTION . . . But at this time the great powers may take a menacing attitude to hinder the election of the logical and expected candidate by threats of a general apostasy, assassination or imprisonment of this candidate if elected. This would suppose an extremely hostile mind in the governments of Europe towards the Church, because an extended interregnum in the papacy is always disastrous and more so in a time of universal persecution. If Satan would contrive to hinder a papal election, the Church would suffer great travail… one…destined for the papacy at the time will institute the needed reforms. A general council may decree the reforms…The lax clergy at the time will extol the conditions then existing…The dragon is a symbolic term for the evil world powers…They will try to make the Church a “state church” everywhere. This is only possible if they can subject the pope to their wills and compel him to teach and rule as they direct. That would be literally devouring the papacy.

Catholic author and collector of prophecies D. Birch (20th century): Many, many, of the prophecies refer to an Antipope for sometime in the future during which great calamities occur to the Church.

Even the Catholic saint “Pope Gregory the Great” warned that he believed that the time would come when most Catholics would fall for a changed church (which he called a “schism”) in the time of the end.  Would this not take a leader that would be, or at least be like, an antipope or the final Antichrist?

As the list above shows, there are many Catholic writers/saints who have warned of some type of an antipope, maybe even the False Prophet, who could be ecumenical, would lead a compromised church, and may listen to the powers of governments in Europe and, possibly, elsewhere.

The Bible, itself, warns of a time when a European Beast will make some type of deal with an ecumenical Roman religious leader (the False Prophet) and later turn on a compromised church (cf. Revelation 17:15-18; 19:20).

An Ecumenical Pope is Prophesied

On the other hand, there are a variety of Catholic prophecies that seem to look forward to an ecumenical pope.  This pope will endorse a European leader who comes into power after civil unrest in Europe.  This European leader is to establish a new order within Catholicism and essentially eliminate Islam:

Bl. Anna-Maria Taigi (19th century): France shall fall into a frightful anarchy. The French shall have a desperate civil war in the course of which even old men will take up arms. The political parties, having exhausted their blood and their rage without being able to arrive at any satisfactory settlement, shall agree at the last extremity to have recourse to the Holy See. Then the Pope shall send to France a special legate. . . In consequence of the information received, His Holiness himself shall nominate a most Christian King for the government of France…

Bl. Anna Maria Taigi (19th century) …described to me the great ordeal ahead. Rome would be battered by revolutions…Millions of men would die by the sword in war and civil strife, other millions would perish in unforeseen death. Then entire nations would return to the unity of the Church, and many Turks, Pagans and Jews would be converted and their fervour cover with confusion the original Christians. In one word she told me that our Lord was intending to cleanse the world and His Church…

Brother John of the Cleft Rock (1340): The White Eagle (Great Monarch), by order of the Archangel Michael, will drive the crescent from Europe where none but Christians will remain…There will no longer be…Schismatics…

St. Bridget of Sweden (died 1373): The Eagle…He will destroy the Jewish and Mahometan sects.

Telesphorus of Cozensa (died 1388): A powerful French monarch and French pope will regain the holy land after terrible wars in Europe, convert the world, and bring universal peace.

D. Birch (20th century): Civil war will break out in France and Italy…The Great King will be crowned Holy Roman Emperor by the reigning Pope. The Great King will establish Peace and justice in civil matters on a worldwide basis, and protect the primacy of the Church in spiritual matters. The former disciplines of the Church are fully restored and order is re-established…

St. Francis de Paul (1470): The time is coming when the Divine Majesty will visit the world with a new religious order of the holy Cross-bearers… This shall be the last religious order in the Church, and will do more good for our holy religion than all other religious institutions.  By force of arms he shall take possession of a great kingdom.  He shall destroy the sect of Mahomet, extirpate all tyrants and heresies.  He will bring the world to a holy mode of life.  There will be one fold and one Shepherd.  He shall reign until the end of time…

Comments from writer D.A. Birch on the above from his book: Francis…speaks in a series of letters to Simeon de Limena, Count of Montalto in great detail of a future Great Monarch who will be a Roman Emperor. Limena was a great patron of St. Francis’ order and also a great military protector of the Church…He is described as founding a new religious order. To the reader this may sound like he also becomes a priest. That is not the case. What happens is that he founds a religious order, part of which contains military men who take religious vows. He will be the head of the military arm of this order. In this sense it will be like the Knights Templar of the Middle Ages.

D. Birch (commenting further in his book): Many of the prophecies speak of the fact that the Great King at first will not be well-liked, especially by the French clergy.

St. Methodius (circa 385): A time will come when the enemies of Christ will boast…Then a Roman emperor will arise in great fury against them . . . Drawing his sword, he will fall on the foes of Christianity and crush them.

Laurence Ricci, S.J. (died 1775): At a time when the whole world seems doomed, God will intervene. With His aide a valiant duke will arise from the ancient German house which was humiliated by the French monarch. This great ruler will restore stolen Church property. Protestantism will cease and the Turkish empire will end. This duke will be the most powerful monarch on earth. At a gathering of men noted for piety and wisdom he will, with the aid of the Pope, introduce new rules, and ban the spirit of confusion. Everywhere there will be one fold and one shepherd.

Notice that Francis de Paul prophesied that there will be a new essentially Roman Catholic religious order that will do more good for the Roman Catholic Church than all other religious institutions as it will eliminate nearly all opposition.  This is apparently because the King of the North will successfully work with the Pope to make the world nominally Catholic.

However, notice that some of the Catholic clergy will at first oppose this new order and these changes to Catholicism, but that the pope (probably the final one, and possibly the current one) will embrace them.

While some Catholic prophecies praise a new religious order, others indicate that a new type of Catholicism will not be true to some of its beliefs.  Some Catholics have felt that some of their “ecumenical leaders” have not been truly faithful to the beliefs of the Church of Rome. (Thiel B. The Last Pope Do Biblical and Catholic Prophecies Point to Pope Francis? Nazarene Books, 2013)

Let me add here that the Bible warns against the type of ecumenical unity that Pope Francis is promoting. Furthermore, it essentially teaches that there will be a split between the Antichrist/Antipope and the Vatican (cf. Revelation 17:15).

While because of his age, I have tended towards the view that Pope Francis will NOT be the final Antichrist/Antipope, I remain of the view that his ecumenical agenda is setting the stage for the final Antichrist/Antipope to arise.

The fact that there is opposition with the Catholic clergy to Pope Francis now shows that there can well be a split among those in the Church of Rome.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

Why Should American Catholics Fear Unity with the Orthodox? (And the Protestants) Are the current ecumenical meetings a good thing or will they result in disaster? Is doctrinal compromise good? Here is a link to a related video Should you be concerned about the ecumenical movement?
Will the Interfaith Movement Lead to Peace or Sudden Destruction? Is the interfaith movement going to lead to lasting peace or is it warned against? A video sermon of related interest is: Will the Interfaith Movement lead to World War III? and a video sermon is also available: Do You Know That Babylon is Forming?
Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Continuing Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions. [Português: Qual é fiel: A igreja católica romana ou a igreja do deus?]
Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy? Here is a link in the German language: WO IST DIE WAHRE CHRISTLICHE KIRCHE HEUTE? Here is a link in the French language: Où est la vraie Église Chrétienne aujourd’hui?
Continuing History of the Church of God This pdf booklet is a historical overview of the true Church of God and some of its main opponents from Acts 2 to the 21st century. Related sermon links include Continuing History of the Church of God: c. 31 to c. 300 A.D. and Continuing History of the Church of God: 4th-16th Centuries and Continuing History of the Church of God: 17th-20th Centuries. The booklet is available in Spanish: Continuación de la Historia de la Iglesia de Dios, German: Kontinuierliche Geschichte der Kirche Gottes, French: L’Histoire Continue de l’Église de Dieu and Ekegusii Omogano Bw’ekanisa Ya Nyasae Egendererete.
Sola Scriptura or Prima Luther? What Did Martin Luther Really Believe About the Bible? Though he is known for his public sola Scriptura teaching, did Martin Luther’s writings about the Bible suggest he felt that prima Luther was his ultimate authority? Statements from him changing and/or discounting 18 books of the Bible are included. Do you really want to know the truth?
The Dangerous Rise of Preterists Has the Great Tribulation finished? What was the view of early Christians? Why is the preterist view dangerous?
Protestant and Church of God views of the United States in Bible Prophecy Is the USA mentioned in Bible prophecy? Some Protestants say yes, while others say no. What does the Bible really teach? Learn the truth about this. There is also a video available: Is The United States Mentioned In Bible Prophecy?
Hope of Salvation: How the Continuing Church of God differ from most Protestants How the real Church of God differs from mainstream/traditional Protestants, is perhaps the question I am asked most by those without a Church of God background. As far as some changes affecting Protestantism, watch the video Charismatic Kenneth Copeland and Anglican Tony Palmer: Protestants Beware!
Beware: Protestants Going Towards Ecumenical Destruction! What is going on in the Protestant world? Are Protestants turning back to their ‘mother church’ in Rome? Does the Bible warn about this? What are Catholic plans and prophecies related to this? Is Protestantism doomed?
Where is the True Christian Church Today? This free online pdf booklet answers that question and includes 18 proofs, clues, and signs to identify the true vs. false Christian church. Plus 7 proofs, clues, and signs to help identify Laodicean churches. A related sermon is also available: Where is the True Christian Church? Here is a link to the booklet in the Spanish language: ¿Dónde está la verdadera Iglesia cristiana de hoy? Here is a link in the German language: WO IST DIE WAHRE CHRISTLICHE KIRCHE HEUTE? Here is a link in the French language: Où est la vraie Église Chrétienne aujourd’hui?
The Last Pope Do Biblical and Catholic Prophecies Point to Pope Francis? Why might Pope Francis be the last pope? What happens if he is? Biblical and other prophecies help explain what to expect.
The Last Pope: Do Biblical and Catholic Prophecies Point to Pope Francis? Amazon Book What does the Bible say about a pope near this time? Is the final pope to be an antipope and antichrist? Does Catholic prophecy point to Pope Francis as being the dreaded “Peter the Roman”? This 186 page book provides information and answers.
The Last Pope: Do Biblical and Catholic Prophecies Point to Pope Francis? Kindle This electronic version of the printed book which is available for only US$2.99. And you do not need an actual Kindle device to read it. Why? Amazon will allow you to download it to almost any device: Please click HERE to download one of Amazon s Free Reader Apps. After you go to for your free Kindle reader and then go to The Last Pope: Do Biblical and Catholic Prophecies Point to Pope Francis? Kindle.

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