Three Popes will die in one month

My understanding of this future event developed as a result of a discussion in my group here:
Over time, I have become convinced that this is the correct understanding: the “three shepherds” mentioned in the book of the prophet Zechariah are three Popes.

{11:6} And so, I will no longer spare the inhabitants upon the earth, says the Lord. Behold, I will deliver men, each one into the hand of his neighbor and into the hand of his king. And they will cut down the land, and I will not rescue it from their hand.
{11:7} And I will pasture the flock of the slaughter, because of this, O poor of the flock. And I took to myself two staffs: the one I called Handsome, and the other I called Rope, and I pastured the flock.
{11:8} And I cut down three shepherds in one month. And my soul became contracted concerning them, just as their soul also varied concerning me.
{11:9} And I said: I will not pasture you. Whatever dies, let it die. And whatever is cut down, let it be cut down. And let the rest of them devour, each one the flesh of his neighbor.

Verse by verse interpretation:

11:6 — The tribulation begins. War and severe civil disorder are the first two events (first two horsemen/seals of the apocalypse).

11:7 — God continues to pasture his flock, the Church, during this terrible time. Many die in the tribulation, so they are “the flock of the slaughter”. The two staffs are two loose-knit groups of Catholics, the very conservative (Handsome) and the very liberal (Rope).

Pope Francis resigns, sometime after World War 3 starts. His true teachings and his decisions on discipline upset conservatives so much that many formally depart from the Church. They falsely accuse Pope Francis of heresy and of causing grave harm by his decisions on discipline. The controversy leads to more than a few Bishops and many priests and laypersons departing from communion with the Pope and the body of Bishops. This is the first phase of the great apostasy. As a result, Pope Francis later reigns (about 2017 or so).

The next Pope will be the very conservative Cardinal Arinze, as Pope Pius XIII. He will not contradict the liberal true teachings of Pope Francis. He will declare that Pope Francis was never a heretic. The conservatives who left the Church, do not return under Pope Pius XIII. Then the Pope teaches true doctrine and makes decisions on discipline upsetting to liberal Catholics. Very many Catholics depart from the Church as a result. This is the second phase of the great apostasy.

11:8 — Three Popes will be alive at the same time: Pope emeritus Benedict, Pope emeritus Francis, and Pope Pius XIII. These are the three shepherds whom God will permit to be “cut down” (to die) in one month. Pope Pius XIII will be captured during World War 3 and will die in captivity. I do not know how Benedict and Francis die. I believe that Francis only dies after resigning from office.

God permits the great apostasy: “my soul became contracted concerning them”. Many Catholics act with great unfaithfulness, by rejecting Pope Francis or Pope Pius XIII and their respective teachings: “just as their soul also varied concerning me.”

11:9 — The tribulation worsens and many persons die: “Whatever dies, let it die.” To those Catholics who chose to depart from the Church, God says: “I will not pasture you.” They do not have the favor of God. If they wish to be pastured by God, they must return to communion with the Church, and accept the teachings of each successive Pope and each successive Council.

{11:10} And I took my staff, which was called Handsome, and I tore it apart, so as to invalidate my pact, which I had struck with all of the people.
{11:11} And it became invalid in that day. And so they understood, just like the poor of the flock who stay close to me, that this is the word of the Lord.

{11:14} And I cut short my second staff, which was called Rope, so that I might dissolve the brotherhood between Judah and Israel.

11:10 — The staff called Handsome is the conservatives who depart from the Church under Pope Francis. The pact that is invalidated is their membership in the Church; they are no longer formal members of the Church, since they have committed schism.

11:11 — The “poor of the flock who stay close” to God are those faithful souls who do not depart under Pope Francis and do not depart under his conservative successor, Pope Pius XIII.

11:14 — The staff called Rope is the liberal Catholics who depart from the Church under Pope Pius XIII. This departure is also a schism, dissolving the brotherhood between liberals and conservatives which exists (or should exist) within the one Church.

My fellow Catholics, the great apostasy is very near. Already, some conservatives are proclaiming that they will reject Pope Francis if he teaches any doctrine or imposes any discipline that is contrary to their own ideas and preferences. And you know that many liberal Catholics have utterly rejected the Magisterium as Teacher; they believe whatever they wish. Soon most Catholics will leave the Church, first conservatives, then liberals. Some Cardinals, many (but not most) Bishops, very many priests and religious, will reject Pope Francis or his successor and also depart from the Church.

The Church will suddenly become much smaller but also much holier. Later, most who departed will return with repentance and with submission to the teachings of Pope Francis and Pope Pius XIII and every Pope and Council.

Whosoever rejects the Pope, rejects Christ.

Ronald L. Conte Jr.
Roman Catholic theologian and
translator of the Catholic Public Domain Version of the Bible.

Please take a look at this list of my books and booklets, and see if any topic interests you.

Gallery | This entry was posted in eschatology. Bookmark the permalink.