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The prophetic pulse (for your discernment):


Love in every circumstance. It is your great defense. With this you become light. Remember how during wars they forbade sailors from striking a match at night on the deck because even a light that small could be seen for miles? Any light -- even from a match -- is greater than the greatest darkness.

So it is with us, in the present dark. The light within us splits through what attempts to oppress us. Our take on the current situation is that our surroundings are soon going to be more like those in the time of Jesus. Reducing means to simplify. There is power in simplicity.

And this bring us into the realm of prophecy.

We are in prophetic times, which even those who once dismissed prophecy can see in events that grow (and darken) around us. What a time to have light!

The end of the world? Not. Speaking at a ceremony at which he blessed figures of the infant Jesus for Rome Nativity cribs, Pope Benedict XVI said there had been "alarmism" about the end of the world since the days of St. Paul, who in his Letter to the Philippians had told early Christians to rejoice because "The Lord is at hand" (Philippians 4:4-5). This had been wrongly taken to mean the imminent approach of the Last Judgment. "The closing days of 2008 may be marked by floods, terrorism, and global financial collapse," noted a newspaper Monday, "but Pope Benedict XVI has assured believers 'that the end of the world is not nigh.'"

The pontiff commented that "already at that time [during the writing to the Philippians], the Church, illuminated by the Holy Spirit, increasingly understood that the 'closeness' of God is not a question of space and time, but a question of love: love draws near!" We take that under advisement.

But unusual times?

Few would doubt that we are in highly unusual times. The prophetic pulse has long indicated the end of an era (and an error: the mistake of modernism). That feeling is universal among conservative Catholics and "Bible Christians." "I barely recognize this world, from the one that I grew up in," writes a correspondent from Texas, where, God-willing, we look forward toward a February retreat. "It seems that the time of the harvest is fast approaching. That 'quickening' sense is undeniable. It is in this time, in the waning hours of our Time of Grace, that we can most strengthen our souls in humility."

What do others say?

There is the same feeling that we are approaching a high-point event (or series of events).

"As always happens at the time of my stage of sleep, when I am not quite asleep, but about to fall asleep, and am awake enough to know I am not asleep, last evening I heard the words spoken to my soul:  'A great chastisement will come upon all of mankind,'" said another viewer. "I stayed awake and said the Divine Mercy Chaplet. 

"Sometime during the night I dreamt that I was in a room with a man that I did not know. He was a worker of some sort; he wore a hard-hat. He said, 'It's about a minute away.' And I knew he was talking about a destruction of some sort. I woke up and realized that it was not a minute away as we know a minute, but soon. I feel the urgency to stock up on items and pray, pray, pray. A prayer was given to me at Adoration: Merciful Jesus, turn back the Hand of Your Father's wrath. Have mercy on people wherever destruction may come. Bring forth souls to God that they may not suffer despair. Amen."

We feel no sense of panic. Preparation? It is always good, in all seasons, to be prepared. We decided to check in with a man named Charlie Johnston, whose alleged prophecies we recounted years ago.

Charlie, who was once from Belleville, Illinois (where he was active as campaign director for senate candidates, and also a radio host for WKRS, a station based in Waukegan) and now lives in Alabama (we ask prayers for sufferings he endures), claims to have had apparitions of angels since the 1960s as well as the Blessed Mother (and, less frequently, the Lord).

Back when we last spoke to him, he was talking about coming events as a "Great Storm." He now believes we are entering it.

It started before Charlie was a Catholic, when he was a boy of eight, says Johnston, and at first, it was locutions. His parents were anti-Catholic. As a boy, says Johnston, who has also worked as a salesman, God "talked" to him. You can discern with us.

"It was sometime around eight that I realized people who heard voices were kind of strange," he says. "It was Gabriel most often. My parents were fundamentalists and my great-grandfather was a snake-handling preacher in Alabama. You may know that fundamentalists are big on baptizing, but the first time my parents took me to be baptized, the car broke down and we didn't get there. The second time they got into a big argument, so we didn't get there. And there never was a third time because they simply forgot. It slipped their minds until I was the age where I had to consent to the fundamentalist baptism -- and I did not consent. Fundamentalism didn't do it for me."

"Understand, I was hidden for a long time," he adds. "My relatives [not his parents, but others] would get me alone and put their shaky hands on my head and start yelling and crying to cast the demon out of me and that was very scary for a little boy, but I could feel the Father come and protect me and keep me still. Over time I tried to find what was true. Fundamentalists are death on Catholics. The Blessed Mother didn't show up in the early years, and when I came into the Church [in 1991] the one thing I was choking on was the Hail Mary because it called her the 'Mother of God.' Protestants don't have quite the sense of mystery that Catholics do."

At first it was locutions.

God purportedly "talked" to him. Later there were the visions. He was shown a path through a woods of thick brambles that was to be one course his life would take if he chose. It was a path of sacrifice, sorrow, and some sufferings -- but a path that would help save souls.

He was also shown the prophecy about the "storm." Through the years it turned out to be an ongoing vision about a world "gone mad," says this Catholic convert -- a world where evil looks good and good is looked upon as evil. There had also been a peculiar vision in the mid-1960s in which a woman was hiding him because people were putting knives to children. "That didn't make sense to me until I realized the implications of abortions, which came later," Johnston recounts. "Abortion is a satanic sacrament."

It seemed like such a dramatic change, such a transformation of society -- of the world -- says the former radio newsman -- that he didn't think it could occur in his lifetime.

But as a result, he was instructed, there would be a great storm coming -- and it involved death, destruction, and sorrow in many forms.  

"I wanted desperately to prevent that," he says. "In 1993 there [was the first of] three great visions," he told us. "I call them 'great' visions because they went the greatest length in instructing me as to what is coming."

The former political consultant asserts that he was informed in visions that the "storm" -- a great global conflict between those of the Judeo-Christian ethic and those who seek to wipe out that ethic -- would break after the death of Pope John Paul II. The Pope was sent to prepare us, Johnston asserts -- and now intercedes specifically about the storm that is coming.

"It always involved economics," says Johnston, who last spoke with us six years ago. "I always talk about going back to 'first things.' Technology generally will fail.

"The reason for it is that we must be relieved of the notion that we are sufficient to ourselves. That notion is causing souls to perish at an unprecedented rate. This storm will help us to come back to a right relation with God, understanding our dependence on Him and our obligation to others. But we are very, very stubborn. So particularly beginning with the period of rumblings before the storm, we are given ‘false dawns,’ periods when it feels like we have gotten things back under control.

"These false dawns are followed by disaster, more stark and terrible than before. It will continue in a steady cycle downward. It will take a lot of ourselves kidding ourselves that we have things under control, only to see the bottom drop out of the tub before we figure out we are in control of nothing. It will rage ever more violently."

When everything "explodes," a Muslim jihad will be in the first series of events, he believes, but "that's not the real danger. The real external threat comes from the Red Dragon, China.

"Now for some specifics," he adds. "From the beginning I had insisted that there would be a rise in wide-scale stark terror as a primary method in this storm. I had written in ’01 that we would see a significant warming in our relations with Russia for a while, followed by them dramatically hitting the rocks again. But I told the priests [who serve as his spiritual directors] to keep their eye on Russia, because in the end she will be our most steadfast and reliable ally. As I have also said since the start, the storm '…will break through North Korea, but will not be centered in North Korea.' That is specific language that has been used with me and you can speculate endlessly about what it means.

"In the early years, Jihad will seem the great battle. Certainly, it is the most showy and determined. But it will collapse more quickly and easily than people can imagine – once we understand that it is a battle that we can’t negotiate our way out of. But Jihad is not the most dangerous of the bad actors – it is China. It will take some years for us to see that China is the real center and the real implacable enemy of western civilization. China may already be the most militarily strong nation in the world. It will be the challenge posed by China, once she is fully unmasked, that drives Russia into the west and common cause with America."

He believes an event will occur that could cost about 25 million lives. He warns about electromagnetic weaponry. Strong stuff! How do we deal with prophecy that possesses such specificity? A global "civil war"?

We take it to prayer -- and remember that the most important part of prayer is to pray for our own light.

It is time to purify!

With that, there is no fear.

It is time to go to the Blessed Mother (who Johnston says comes to him as "Our Lady of Tepeyac," referring to the hill at the site of what became known as "Guadalupe").

Here we get yet more controversial. Johnston claims the Blessed Mother prefers this title of "Tepeyac," and that she arrived because missionaries had failed to do what her image then did: evangelize Mexico and its pagan Indians. Now, says Johnston, Europe -- which "should be the heart of Christianity" -- will be re-evangelized through the New World (and in his opinion, through Latin America, especially Mexicans).

Actually, says Johnston (who suffers severe back and other problems), there is no way to prepare for what is coming except through Mass. When events arrive, we will not be isolated; we will need each other; we will have to revert back to a community feeling -- pulling together locally. He sees an event that will destroy telecommunications.

Last Easter, asserts the former political advisor (who, though Republican, once rubbed elbows with the likes of Barack Obama), he was told by the Lord that "now the hour of darkness comes upon the world, but be not afraid, the darkness will not prevail."

When the Lord speaks, says Johnston, he can only listen.

Meanwhile: "Our Lady is not terribly voluble, and has never spoken to me in the flowery way in which she is often quoted. She is very tender and gentle, frequently conveying her meaning with a gesture or a caress. When she speaks, she is concise. Only once has she spoken at great length with me (December 7, 1995), and even then, she used images and showed me as much as she spoke. She is very sorrowful: if people knew how intently and constantly she is interceding on our behalf it would, I think, amaze them. It is what dominates her and what she spends all her time on."

There will come a time, he believes, when even he will despair, but then Mary will be sent to the rescue.

"I worry now that everyone is looking around to see who is the Anti-Christ," he warns. "They miss the point. Christ is eternal. Before He took on our flesh, He already was. No man, not a single one, is made for perdition. The Spirit of Anti-Christ has been in the world for some time and it is this: the belief that good can be done without reference to God.

"That is why it is so insidious. Those who are under its spell believe they are doing good. It is very subtle. But it is men, made in God's Image, who fall so far astray that they come under the spell of the Anti-Christ -- and some even welcome it into their souls (a form of possession)."

"This is not the end," he says -- echoing the Pope (although we spoke to Charlie the night before Benedict's remarks were reported). And good will come of it. There will be a moment of sheer desperation. Then the Blessed Mother will be allowed to rescue us. "It will result in a fundamental re-unification of Christianity," he intones. "The storm is not God's punishment. The storm is God letting us suffer the consequences of our actions. And even with the storm, He is still holding back the full consequences. Our Lord speaks with an unmistakable voice of command, but He speaks rarely."

He adds: "For now, the most important thing to let your readers know is that their only security is to stay close to the Eucharist and to Our Lady. It is good to watch the signs of the time, but if they get caught up in a mania for the supernatural, they will miss the little whisper from God that is the only thing that is vital for their security. Trust me, if God speaks to you in the thunder, you won't miss it. And if people knew more about what it is and what price it entails, they would be significantly less eager to experience it. And it is only important to particular missions -- not to the individual's salvation. If the individual who hears the thunder is distracted from the little whispers from God each day, he, too, is in grave danger of losing his own salvation."

And so we have an update from Charlie Johnston.


See the 1990 prophecy, which bears remarkable similarities.

What do others say?

Oh, what times!

In England, rumbles. In South Carolina, rumblings. In the Midwest, in the north, in the West....

As for darkness: we note that even when turned away from the inn, Joseph and Mary did not despair. There was the star in the sky that split the darkest night and then the Light of the world.

[see also: previous articles on Johnston and Pope: end of world not nigh]

[see too: U.S., China, and the coming financial storm]

[resources: Tower of Light]

[Retreat announced for Houston]

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