Q. What do you think of Saint Malachy and the prophecy of the 112 popes?
A. Tradition holds that in 1139, St. Malachy, who was the Bishop of Armagh, was summoned to Rome by Pope Innocent II. While he was there, he supposedly had a vision of 112 future popes in their proper order, which he recorded in the form of a series of short phrases that describe each one.
Advocates claim that each phrase can be tied to the actual corresponding pope. The Current pope, Benedict XVI, is number 111 on the list so according to the prophecy his successor will be the last pope, who is predicted to reign during a time of tribulation when the City of Rome will be destroyed.
I try to approach non-Biblical prophecy with an open mind but I’ll admit to a bit of skepticism. Only God knows the end from the beginning, and as far as I can tell no one is claiming that St. Malachy’s list came through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.
I prefer to wait and see if Pope Benedict resigns soon, as some are predicting, and if His successor seems to fit the description of Peter the Roman, the 112th and final pope on St. Malachy’s list.