This Pope (Pope Benedict XVI) is very traditional. He believes that strengthening our beliefs in the doctrines of the church are how we grow spiritually. He is a strong spiritual presence, and he’s gotten this belief through studying the church’s doctrines and his own spiritual efforts. This helps those who also believe in Catholic doctrine. It will help those who want to follow the Catholic doctrine. The attrition rate will continue, because there will many who want to go beyond the Catholic doctrine.
The number of people in the church will stay the same because children are being born into the Catholic Church.
This Pope will put a lot of effort into bringing people into the church. He’ll travel to try to strengthen people’s connection to the church – not so much his 1st year, but his 2nd – 4th years. This will happen for about 4 years, until mid-2009 when he will slow down the traveling because of his health. He’ll be in-house at that time. There will be some that become priests and nuns because of his efforts.
However, the problem with the shortage of priests will be solved by having fewer people in the church. He won’t be sanctioning women as priest because he’s traditional. Traditional beliefs will be his core during his tenure. He won’t open up more on the issues of gay marriages, birth control, nor anything more about the sex abuse by priests. His agenda will be to preach the Catholic doctrine as a method to grow spiritually. This will help those who believe this way, because it will help many deepen their Catholic spiritual beliefs.
He won’t be a strong political leader. He knows his years are limited and he wants to focus on his spiritual agenda. His health will suffer in the 5th year. His tenure will last 10-11, maybe 12 years ending 2016-2017.
After this Pope: There will be a man of great spirituality and/or a weak Pope – both within the same person. He will try to open up the church. There will be such internal and some external opposition after about 2-3 years (2019). This will create political conflict within the Vatican organization and those that oppose him will try to find a replacement. There will be one person in the Vatican that spearheads his ouster and works to put someone else in the position of Pope. At this time will come the Anti-Pope. An Anti-Pope is a Pope not elected by the cardinals, but put in place through some other way. There will be 2 Popes. One elected and one chosen. The church as we know it will come to an end. The church in different forms will continue though. (reading of 2005)