Catholic Prophecy: the Coming Chastisement, by Yves DuPont, the classic compilation of prophecies from mystics who have long forecast a coming chastisement and the potential arrival of a comet -- enthralling predictions from ancient times through nuns, mystics, and stigmatists in the twentieth century, for your discernment! CLICK HERE



There it was, last weekend, tailor-made for the media, an obscure 89-year-old minister -- of his own self-made church, in California -- saying that at six p.m. on May 21 the long-awaited "rapture" -- a Protestant concept (though originally promoted by a Jesuit) that God's people will be swept up to Heaven before tribulation, literally disappearing, and leaving everyone behind -- would occur. In short: the world would end over the weekend. The preacher based it on what he said was a literal reading of the Bible without apparently considering the part of the Bible that (literally) says no one knows the day or hour (Matthew 24:36).

Massively, gleefully, the media jumped on it. They knew the vast majority of Christians -- of whatever denomination, and even if they do believe that a judgment or purification of some kind is nigh, which many do, ourselves included -- did not take the minister's calculation seriously. How many times have we gone through this? And we have not even reached the even more anticipated year 2012 yet! It is stuff we all remember at one point or another from school days and the media loved it because it is the devil's way of making believers seem foolish and dissuading regard for any prophecy (as also happened with Y2K -- which was just as errant, predictably).

Ironically, on this very same day, a Pope was speaking for the first time ever to astronauts in space. It was a historic, warm, and revealing moment. And it had to do with the future. A surprising number of the astronauts (and cosmonauts) professed belief in prayer, and all of them were very respectful and excited to be talking with the Pontiff. They spoke both personally and about huge issues like peace and preserving the earth's environment.

All of this was all but lost by the media stories on the poor "rapture" preacher. They really do so love trying to lump everyone who believes in Divine precognition, and perhaps believes, period, with that minister! Noted one blogger accurately: "I suspect that the media feeding frenzy has less to do with an impulse to lampoon the ridiculous than an impulse to ridicule Christianity in general. Despite Camping and his followers being an extremely small fringe group, the media has covered this story as if the entire Southern Baptist church made this prediction."

Satan's hand in all this. He detests true prophecy. So it goes. He makes fools of those who are too specific. At the other extreme are those who discount everything prophetic and argue that God never sends judgments, chastisement, purification, or whatever you want to call it -- natural disasters.

Most recently, on April 22 (Good Friday), the papal preacher, Father Raniero Cantalamessa, stated that "earthquakes, hurricanes and other disasters that strike the innocent and the guilty alike are never punishments from God. To say otherwise would be to offend both God and humanity." He doesn't speak for the Pope and his homilies are probably not vetted, but it was noteworthy nonetheless. Once in a while, during homilies, priests in the United States will stake out the same fascinating, if baffling, claim. (Apparently it's a theme taught in current seminaries.)

Often, we have expressed it this way -- that when we distance ourselves from God, we distance ourselves from His order and protection.

At the same time, it can also be said that God sends punishments. Otherwise, to take just one salient case, how can we interpret Sodom and Gomorrah? (Genesis 13:10: "Lot lifted up his eyes and saw all the valley of the Jordan, that it was well watered everywhere--this was before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah -- like the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt as you go to Zoar." 

It is hard to spin the above. There are so many other examples in the Bible that it would take a complete re-reading of both Testaments to fairly choose the most striking mentions of how God does send judgment. They are throughout. One can open up random pages and find examples. It is indicated or outright mentioned by apostles and Jesus Himself. Try the Book of Revelation -- the "trumpets," and the opening of the Seals, and especially Chapter 14 and Chapter 16. One quick example: "

Revelation 16: Six Bowls of Wrath:

"Then I heard a loud voice from the temple, saying to the seven angels, 'Go and pour out on the earth the seven bowls of the wrath of God.'


"Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl upon the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple from the throne, saying, 'It is done.' And there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder; and there was a great earthquake, such as there had not been since man came to be upon the earth, so great an earthquake was it, and so mighty. The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell Babylon the great was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of His fierce wrath."

Tough stuff to spin. At Fatima, the Blessed Mother said if mankind did not reform, there would be a great chastisement in the way of another great war -- and that a great sign (a natural event) would announce it. This was a Church-approved apparition. So was LaSalette in France, where the Blessed Mother stated that if men continued to sin, and offend Christ (especially by using His Name in vain), there would be a plague and a great famine -- which in fact occurred later that year! That was the "approved" message. A longer prophecy that never won final approval from LaSalette spoke of even greater disasters sent by God.

His chastisements have also been mentioned at Church-approved apparitions in Nicaragua; Kibeho, Rwanda; San Nicolas, Argentina; Akita, Japan; and the Miraculous Medal in Paris. At Medjugorje, which John Paul II believed in, and where a prominent cardinal recently made headlines supporting it, the Blessed Mother warned of warnings, a great miracle, and chastisement and explicitly said, "You have no idea what God the Father will send to earth."

Indeed, Who sent the Flood? Who sent plagues -- and locusts -- upon Egypt? Who chastised Israel? Who chastised Babylon? Who sent Jonah to Nineveh?

It is perhaps part of the disorientation of our times that modern instruction -- bent on a feel-good approach, with no balance -- suddenly takes away this perspective. Again, the devil likes to obfuscate through mockery.

Anyway, the Bible speaks for itself and does so very clearly -- when we let It do the speaking, without spinning it, and certainly without putting a date on it.

[see also: Why the 'rapture' is wrong and Obscured by 'end-of-world' hype, Pope speaks to space station]

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[Feedback from a viewer named Maria: "Read your article today about God's timing for chastisements. Wondered if you knew about how the timing of the Minneapolis tornado and a major gay rights rally (Harvey Milk Day) intersected yesterday. The rally was dispersed by the tornado. I wonder at the timing... Regardless, all we can do is continue to pray for all involved in both the misguided rally and the tornado's devastation."]

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