Monday, February 18, 2013

IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD AND WE KNOW IT


BUT I FEEL FINE, ST. MALACHY

Temecula, CA – Four asteroids streaking down upon the planet in as many days; a shiny ‘door handle’ found on Mars by Curiosity; North Korea’s sat launch, nuclear test and ‘We Nuke You’ dream video; two alien anomalies seen siphoning energy from our sun just two months apart [end of last year]; drone strikes; the Mayan thing; and the Pope saying “I Quit”. Even the staid MSNBC had to release a story, a tongue-in-cheek story albeit, about the Ooooo end time Prophecy of the Popes. Brought to you after the jump from Alan Boyle, NBC science news editor, is the story of St. Malachy. Remember also that they were unaware when the flood waters came and carried them all away.

‘Just when you thought it was safe to go out of the bunker, there's a fresh wave of doomsday buzz over a purported 12th-century prophecy suggesting that the next pope will be the last pope before the end of the world.
St. Malachy's "Prophecy of the Popes" has no credence in the Roman Catholic Church, but its effect could well be longer-lasting than the hype that surrounded the 2012 Maya apocalypse — especially if the papal conclave goes with one of the favored candidates for Benedict XVI's successor.

The text that's been attributed to (St.) Malachy came to light in 1595, in a book by Benedictine monk Arnold de Wyon. Supposedly, Malachy experienced a vision of future popes during a trip to Rome in 1139, and wrote down a series of 112 cryptic phrases that described each pope in turn. The text was said to have lain unnoticed in Rome's archives until Wyon found and published it.

Doomsday fans (and others) have found ways to link each phrase to its corresponding pope through the centuries. That includes John Paul II, who is associated with phrase No. 110, "From the labor of the sun," because he was born on the day of a solar eclipse and was entombed on the day of a solar eclipse as well. Benedict XVI, No. 111, is supposedly "glory of the olive" because some members of a branch of the monastic order founded by St. Benedict are known as Olivetans.

Then there's No. 112, the last Pope: "In the extreme persecution of the Holy Roman Church, there will sit ... Peter the Roman, who will nourish the sheep in many tribulations; when they are finished, the city of seven hills will be destroyed, and the dreadful judge will judge his people. The end."

The end? This could be the beginning for a doomsday meme that hangs over a whole generation, if it's taken seriously. There's already a 586-page book about the coming apocalypse, titled "Petrus Romanus." One theologian, Michael K. Lake, is quoted as saying that "Catholic and evangelical scholars have dreaded this moment for centuries."

In fact, the Catholic Church doesn't put any stock in the prophecies, for a variety of reasons. One of the biggest red flags is that no mention was made about the papal prophecies until the 1590s — not even by St. Bernard of Clairvaux, a close friend of Malachy's who wrote his biography and hailed his gift of prophecy. And then there's always the biblical dictum that no one knows the day or the hour for doomsday — a rule of thumb that works for believers as well as non-believers.'

[However, the saint does not give an hour or day prediction unlike contemporary false prophets. The saint merely predicts the time period. Here is the more detailed back story:

The Pope Prophecies were first published in 1595 by the Benedictine monk named Arnold de Wyon in his Lignum Vitæ, a history of the Benedictine order. Wyon attributed the prophecies to Saint Malachy, the 12thcentury Archbishop of Armagh. He explained that the prophecies had not, to his knowledge, ever been printed before, but that many were eager to see them. Wyon includes both the original prophecies, consisting of short, cryptic Latin phrases, as well as an interpretation applying the statements to historical popes up to Urban VII (pope for thirteen days in 1590), which Wyon attributes to Alphonsus Ciacconius.

According to the traditional account, Saint Malachy was summoned to Rome in 1139 by Pope Innocent II to receive two wool palliums for the metropolitan sees of Armagh and Cashel. While in Rome, Malachy purportedly experienced a vision of future popes, which he recorded as a sequence of cryptic phrases. This manuscript was then deposited in the Vatican Secret Archives, and forgotten about until its rediscovery in 1590, just in time for a papal conclave ongoing at the time.

The Vatican Secret Archives (Latin: Archivum Secretum Vaticanum), located in Vatican City, is the central repository for all of the acts promulgated by the Holy See. The Pope, having primal incumbency until death, owns the archives until the next appointed Papal successor. The archives also contain the state papers, correspondence, papal account books, and many other documents which the church has accumulated over the centuries. In the 17th century, under the orders of Pope Paul V, the Secret Archives were separated from the Vatican Library, where scholars had some very limited access to them, and remained absolutely closed to outsiders until 1881, when Pope Leo XIII opened them to researchers, more than a thousand of whom now examine its documents each year.

The Vatican Secret Archives have been estimated to contain 52 miles (84 km or round trip to Catalina) of shelving and there are 35,000 volumes in the selective catalogue alone. "Indexes must be consulted in the Index Room and replaced in their original location. Publication of the indexes, in part or as a whole, is forbidden." The Archives support their own photographic and conservation studios.

According to the website of the Archives, the oldest surviving document dates back to the end of the eighth century. "Transfers and political upheavals nearly caused the total loss of all the archival material preceding Innocent III." From 1198 onwards, more complete archives exist, though documentation is scant before the 13th century. Since that time, the documentation includes items such as Henry VIII of England's request for a marriage annulment and letters from Michelangelo.]

'Most experts have concluded that the text was made up to boost a 16th-century cardinal's bid to become pope. [The official way to debunk something]

But if the coming papal conclave really wanted to drum up the doomsday talk, as well as sales for "Petrus Romanus," all they'd have to do is elect one of the leading candidates: Ghanaian Cardinal Peter Turkson, a member of the Roman Curia. Even though church tradition would forbid any pope from taking the name Peter II, Turkson could arguably be described as Peter the Roman. Others suggest that he could be the "young red black one" mentioned in the similarly cryptic doomsday prophecies of Nostradamus.

Whomever the conclave picks, there'll surely be a way to connect him somehow with "Peter the Roman" — after all, isn't every pope a successor to St. Peter, based in Rome? "Any pope can be thought of as the latest Peter in the line," Tom Horn, one of the authors of "Petrus Romanus," said a couple of months ago on the Coast to Coast AM radio show.

Which means we might have to deal with 2012-style doomsaying as long as the next guy is in office.’

(All emphasis - Ed.)

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