Last issue in this space I said that John Paul II's death marked the end of an era and that we now have entered into different times. We accept this understanding of the prophecy. What Conchita said was that there would be three more popes and then it will be the end of our times. We are now living in that "and then" period. Our Lady never said everything had to happen overnight. And I don't know of anyone who was certain just how "the end of our times" would come about.
We're dealing here with things we don't fully understand for now nor will we understand them until some time in the future. Conchita said there would be three more popes and now we have a fourth without any noticeable change in the times. This may appear like a contradiction, but it may not be. Conchita has received a number of revelations from Our Lady about the papacy and they have always come true (see box below). We may not now see how this one is fulfilled, but God sometimes asks for trust in the face of apparent contradiction. The Fathers of the Church did not always agree on everything but there is one thing they did agree on: that the Blessed Virgin Mary made a vow of chastity at a very early age. But as a temple virgin when she reached marriageable age, she was forced to leave the temple and marry. She knew what that meant, But how could it be? Hadn't she sacrificed her virginity to God and hadn't He accepted, even inspired her sacrifice? We can well imagine the inner turmoil she must have gone through in the face of this seeming contradiction. Then Saint Gabriel appeared and suddenly everything became clear.
Another example we can use as a guide is from Saint John's gospel, chapter six where Our Lord was teaching in the synagogue at Caphernaum and said: "Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink His blood, you have no life in you." Who, at the time, could possibly have understood what He meant since the Last Supper was still a future event? Many of His disciples said: "This is a hard saying. Who can listen to it." And they no longer remained in His company. Then Jesus said to the apostles: "Will you also go away?" And Peter replied: "To whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life; and we have believed, and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God." Peter said this because of all the marvels that he and the others had already seen. Similarly, we have come to believe that the Blessed Virgin really appeared at Garabandal because of the abundance of proofs she has already given us. And just as the apostles had their Pentecost when they received from the Holy Spirit the light of understanding of all that Jesus had taught them, we too look forward to our pentecost experience, the Great Miracle, when we too will receive light for the things we now do not fully understand. We put our trust in Our Lady who said, "All will believe."
- Barry Hanratty
Fulfilled Papal Prophecies From Garabandal
The Pope will go to the Holy Land
Seen by Father Alfred Combe in the notebook of Father Lucio Rodrigo, S.J.: "The pope will go to the Holy Land." After Pope Paul VI's historic visit on May 13, 1967, Father Rodrigo wrote in the margin, "done."
One will have a very short reign
Conchita said this to Albrecht Weber of Germany on November 14, 1965., It refers to John Paul I.
Another Pope will continue the Council
On June 3, 1963, when Pope John XXIII died, Conchita said to Paquina de la Roza Velarde, "Another pope will come and the Council will continue" (SHE WENT IN HASTE TO THE MOUNTAIN). Pope Paul VI did not have to continue Vatican II. After Pius IX opened the First Vatican Council in 1869, it was suspended in 1870 when revolutionaries took over Rome, but was never closed and could have been continued by a succeeding pontiff. But it never was.
One will have special devotion to Our Lady
Mother Maria Nieves, Superior of the school in Burgos that Conchita attended in 1966-67, remembered Conchita telling her that the last of the popes before el fin de los tiempos (the end of the times) will be Papa Papa (this would refer to John Paul II) y muy amante de la Virgin - and a great lover of the Virgin.
John Paul II will be the last one before the end of the times.
Reprinted with kind permission from Garabandal Journal, Volume 4, Number 3, May-June 2005
From the Editor (Barry Hanratty)