Rome—Where Religion and Politics Meet

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Rome—Where Religion and Politics Meet

Throughout its history, the church has always competed with the state for power.

Having grabbed the attention of the whole world by his shock resignation from papal office, the subsequent actions of Joseph Ratzinger give an inkling as to his future influence within the Vatican and in global politics.

On Saturday, Ratzinger summoned Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti to an unscheduled private audience. With the Italian elections looming within days, the pope has already gone public on endorsing Monti’s candidature for election as Italy’s prime minister.

Interestingly, on the same day of his unscheduled meeting with Monti, the pope indicated that the day following the elections, he will have a meeting behind closed doors with a select few cardinals. No doubt the discussion will center around the outcome of the Italian elections and their impact on the future of the European Union.

With indications that the euro crisis is deepening, it is apparent that strong, assertive leadership is going to be required to dig the EU out of its financial hole.

Mario Monti has already described Joseph Ratzinger’s encyclical Caritas in Veritate as amounting to a blueprint for a “new world order.” If Monti is elected prime minister of Italy, and if the September elections in Germany produce a strong, action-oriented chancellor who is similarly attuned to the worth of Ratzinger’s encyclical as the basis for a new world order, then it becomes entirely feasible that they will work, with the support of Roman Catholic EU elites, to bring that order to fruition.

Nothing else has worked to date to turn the European and global financial crisis around.

In his article titled “The Fourth Reich Is Here,” published in our November/December 2011 edition of the Trumpet magazine, Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry pointed to an enlighteningly prescient prophecy by Herbert Armstrong:

The financial crises we are now experiencing were forecast by Herbert Armstrong back in 1984. A massive banking crisis in America “could suddenly result in triggering European nations to unite as a new world power larger than either the Soviet Union or the U.S.,” he wrote. “That, in turn, could bring on the Great Tribulation suddenly! And that will lead quickly to the Second Coming of Christ and the end of this world as we know it.”Mr. Armstrong prophesied that a financial crisis could trigger a chain of events leading right up to the return of Jesus Christ. Is this what we are now experiencing?

Whether such a collapse is deliberately engineered or happens by dint of circumstance is beside the point. The reality is that the world is heading for just that—global financial collapse, and many of the sharpest of observers are warning of the imminence of such a scenario.

So where does Rome stand in all of this?

Amid all of the confusing hype that the mainstream media has drummed up surrounding Pope Benedict’s resignation, a few keen observations have been made.

One such, given the effort that popes John Paul ii and Benedict xvi committed to rebuilding the Curia as a body in tune with their Holy Roman imperial vision, comes from Alexander Lee, a research fellow at the universities of Luxembourg and Warwick. He states that “the fact that the church will proceed smoothly to elect a new pontiff during the Lenten period illustrates that the papacy is, for the first time in its history, well-supported by a smoothly-functioning Curia, and grounded in a sense of electoral authority that has finally overcome the instabilities of the past” (History Today, February 13).

Though this view flies in the face of that which the liberal press have sought to foist off on to the public in the wake of the undoubted resistance Benedict has faced from the middle ranks of Catholic hierarchy, it does speak to the strength of this pope’s relationship with the echelon that counts in papal power politics—the Curia.

As to Joseph Ratzinger’s continuing influence on the institution of the papacy itself, Lee comments that “he has shown that the institution of the papacy is alive and kicking, and ready to face the challenges of the 21st century with confidence.”

The main challenge that the papacy faces in terms of its religious and political role is the same that the globe faces universally at present—the survival or otherwise of the global financial and economic system.

Fully three years ago Benedict made his position very clear on this subject. He wants a new system created under the religious vision of Rome. At a meeting with members of the Union of Industrialists and Businesses of Rome, Pope Benedict xvi reinforced his call for a new global financial order. Referring to the ongoing global financial crisis, Benedict “noted how it has ‘sorely tried the economic and productive systems of various countries. Nonetheless, it should be faced with trust because it can be considered as an opportunity for the revision of development models and the reorganization of global finance …’” (Vatican Information Service, March 18, 2010).

In pointing to his conviction that now was the time for a revision of the world’s financial system, in that which he described as “a new time” of “profound reflection,” Benedict used crusading language in his widely publicized encyclical Caritas in Veritate, calling for a new financial and economic order.

In that encyclical, endorsing the application of Catholic social doctrine on the global order, the pope highlighted that “he had encouraged the world of ‘economics and finance to focus on the person, whom Christ revealed in His profoundest dignity. Moreover, while recommending that politics not be subordinate to financial mechanisms, I encouraged the reform and creation of an international juridical and political order (adapted to global structures of economy and finance) in order more effectively to achieve the common good of the human family’” (ibid).

That is pure, unadulterated Catholic social doctrine: the merging of the religion of Rome with a universal social order that dictates juridical, political, economic and financial control. It is the very philosophy that underpinned the institution of the Holy Roman Empire of old. Its outcome is prophesied in your Bible in Revelation 13.

Just one year ago, during the G-20 summit, realizing the vital nature of the matters the G-20 was considering, the Vatican issued a call for a return to the old Holy Roman imperial approach to financial governance.

This move took us one further step toward the fulfillment of the great prophecy for our times penned by the Apostle John under divine inspiration almost 2,000 years ago. That prophecy, contained in the 13th chapter of the book of Revelation, speaks of a time when a great religious institution will hold powerful sway over a northern European empire to the extent of imposing its will on global trade and finance.

With that prophecy in mind, it is extremely interesting to consider the following statement released at the time by the Vatican Information Service (vis): “This morning in the Holy See Press Office, a press conference was held to present a note from the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace entitled: ‘Towards reforming the international financial and monetary systems in the context of a global public authority’” (Oct. 24, 2011).

The note was presented by Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson and Bishop Mario Toso.

In relation to the current global financial crisis, vis quoted Cardinal Turkson as stating that the pope and “the Holy See are following these matters with particular concern, constantly calling not just for ‘joint action,’ but for ‘examination of every facet of the problem: social, economic, cultural and spiritual.’ It is in this spirit of discernment that the Holy See, with the note of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, wishes to make a contribution which might be useful to the deliberations of the G-20 meeting.”

The article quoted Bishop Toso as explaining that the aim of the note is to “suggest possible paths to follow, in line with the most recent social Magisterium, for the implementation of financial and monetary policies … that are effective and representative at a global level.”

Certain dissenting voices which were in opposition to the pope’s vision as declared in his encyclical Caritas in Veritate decried the release of this statement. However, one influential Eurocrat fully embraced it—Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti.

Upon its release, Mario Monti was effusive in his endorsement of the pope’s encyclical Caritas in Veritate, claiming that it was a virtual textbook for the operation of a global economy and universal society.

La Stampa reported that as he presented Benedict xvi’s social encyclical in Saint John Lateran, the pope’s cathedral, on Feb. 23, 2010, Monti declared that “The Caritas in Veritate document resembles a technical governing handbook for society in which economy plays a fundamental role, as a natural outcome of ethical reflection, and even has the agreement of those who do not share in the Catholic ethical vision” (Nov. 14, 2011). Monti used that occasion also to publicly declare himself “to be Catholic.”

Mario Monti is a member of the EU splinter organization called “The Spinelli Group.” That group is committed to establishing a federal Europe based on the Catholic social chapter that underpins the pope’s “governing handbook for society.” Endorsement of that Roman imperialist vision marks Monti out as one of those in tune with the European elites who are in the process at this time of carving up Europe into a continent where the many will become the vassals of the few.

Monti was summoned by Pope Benedict to an unscheduled meeting behind closed doors last weekend. Is it possible that their discussion centered on the pope’s will that, should Monti gain the Italian premiership next Sunday, Benedict would be encouraging Monti to lead a crusade for the implementation of the global order as outlined in Caritas in Veritate?

Time will tell. We certainly will not have to wait very long to find out.

One thing is for sure, with every nail that is daily driven into the coffin of the present failed global system, the great prophecies of Revelation 13 and 17 come one step closer to fulfillment!

Read and study our booklet Germany and the Holy Roman Empire for further insight into the current situation in Europe and where it is headed.