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No one knows who the next Pope is going to be. There is lots of room for another big surprise like last time when a Polish-born man was selected - the first non-Italian pope in over 4 centuries. But with the present Pope still alive and reigning, there are already a few Cardinals who have emerged as strong possibilities to succeed him. Two of them are Italians, and another, the most controversial one who is also regarded by many to be the leading candidate, is a German. His very aggressive, hardball personality has not only kept him as the present Pope's right hand man (Cardinal Ratzinger is actually the author of a number of John Paul's very conservative doctrinal statements), it has also earned him the nickname of "panzerkardinal" - "kardinal" is German for Cardinal, and "panzer" is a type of German army tank i.e. some call Joseph Ratzinger the "tank cardinal" and presumably if he became Pope, he would be the "Tank Pope" - which fits very well with what is described in Revelation 13. Regardless of whether Ratzinger himself becomes the next Pope however, Prophecy does portray the last one as a "panzerkardinal" regardless of whether he was like that at first.

Winning The Battle For Hearts and Minds

Pope US Presidents, as long as I can remember, have publicly declared themselves to be "the leader of the free world." The idea apparently seems good and acceptable to most of the folks at home who naturally want to believe that, but do any of the other people in the other 200 nations of the world really regard a foreigner as their leader? No, of course not. One of the two always-fatal flaws of traditional US imperialism has been that people in other nations will no more accept a foreigner (or a foreign-appointed puppet) as their leader than Americans would. The "leader of the free world" idea is regarded as a contradiction by people all around the world because, by definition, free people choose their own leaders from among their fellow citizens. Anyone who has a foreigner as their leader is not free and is therefore not living in the free world. That was the very basis of the American Revolution. No other people will accept anything less for themselves either, regardless of what political system, from dictatorships to democracy, that they live according to.

But there is one huge exception to that, isn't there. There is one foreign head of state who people genuinely do look to as their leader, with love, respect and awe, for the most part just religiously for now, but when the time described in Revelation 13 begins to happen, they will look to him as their political leader too. I am of course referring to the Pope, a man who is the head of state of Vatican City (which is in fact a sovereign country), a man who has over a billion well-meaning but grossly deceived people from every country on earth in his Catholic church (I spent the first 25 years of my life as a Roman Catholic so I have every moral and legal right to say that, to publish the truth about the Church of Rome, regardless of the many who want it stopped because of their fear and hatred of the truth - see also "Come Out Of Her, My People"), a man who nearly all of a billion Protestants will also run "home" to once the "miracles" start (see the Fact Finder question below). The Pope, any Pope, is in a position to actually win the hearts and minds of most people in every nation on earth - something that no other invader could ever do. Other powerful political leaders can threaten nations with bombs and bullets; the Pope can (seemingly, and falsely) threaten entire nations with loss of their salvation (as has actually happened numerous times already throughout history) - and a billion people today believe the Satanic lie that he has that power.

The last Pope is going to be half of the most powerful pair of world leaders, both in Europe (see Rome Is Rome), that the world will ever know (a "marriage" that has gone on already for centuries - see Emperors and Popes). To understand who the other one is, and where he is, and what they will do together, see the Fact Finder question below.

Fact Finder: Why is "panzerkardinal" an appropriate term for the end-time Papacy?
See World War 3 In Prophecy and Who Will Be The Antichrist?

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