Some years ago, Fr. Vincent Miceli warned that: "The West has divinized Security and Technocracy; the East, Science and Revolution. But in both camps atheistic humanism has become the State religion. And both of these systems of secular humanism eclipse the person, eliminate his freedom, deny his human-divine value and subject him to the tyranny of technological impersonalism. The alarming signs of the times testify to a fierce spirit of evil advancing everywhere. It is the spirit of rebellion against God and man. Hitherto the powers of government in each country, as yet relying on God and reason, were firm and vigorous enough to restrain this rebellion. But today many agnostic countries can barely contain that lawless spirit, while many others have actually legalized the principle of lawlessness itself, the principle of license masquerading as liberty.
We are reminded of St. Paul's warning to the Thessalonians. In the last days there will be an aweful, unparalleled outbreak of evil everywhere. This will be called the Great Apostasy. In the midst of this general falling away a certain Man of Sin, having the image of Satan and breathing hatred toward God and man, will appear. He will exercise frightening preternatural powers of destruction against the just. This Child of Perdition will be so special and singular an enemy of Christ that he will be called Antichrist. For just as types of Christ went before Jesus, heralding his coming, so shadows of Antichrist have already preceded him....
But compared to the final Antichrist all forerunners of him were so many mini-Antichrists. This Arch-Antichrist will orchestrate revolutions so expertly that the very framework of society will shatter into pieces under his wicked hand. In a stunningly evil way, he will knit together his totalitarian rule of heresy, sedition, revolution, schism, war - indeed of every evil movement - and hurl them effectively against the Church. Preceded by apostasy, conceived in apostasy, gestated in apostasy, born in apostasy, the Man of Sin will come to power through a General Apostasy. In other words, Antichrist could never have existed except for the decision of the majority of persons in East and West to apostatize from God and to join the forces of atheism.." (Essay entitled "Detente All Around: Prelude to Antichrist?").
Evil is indeed spreading everywhere. Men have grown weary of being men and are beginning to deny Christ more and more. Even in the Church, many are coming to accept homosexuality and abortion as good. Such persons, such enemies of Christ, may still use Christian jargon as they go through the motions of Christian worship, but at base they have opted for evil and radiate the spirit of Antichrist. More than a century ago, Cardinal John Henry Newman predicted the Desolate City which we find ourselves in today: "Surely there is at this day a confederacy of evil, marshalling its hosts from all parts of the world, organizing itself, taking its measures, enclosing the Church of Christ in a net, and preparing the way for a general apostasy from it..."
Our own time is a fulfillment of the prophecy issued by St. Louis de Montfort in his Prayer for Missionaries: "Tempus faciendi, Domine, dissipaverunt legem tuam: it is time to act, O Lord, they have rejected your law. It is indeed time to fulfill your promise. Your divine commandments are broken, your Gospel is thrown aside, torrents of iniquity flood the whole earth carrying away even your servants. The whole land is desolate, ungodliness reigns supreme, your sanctuary is desecrated and the abomination of desolation has even contaminated the holy place.." (PM, 5).
In recent weeks, a Catholic priest who refused to distribute petitions against Washington's same-sex "marriage" law received a standing ovation from his congregation. In the same city [Seattle], a "Pastoral Life Coordinator" also refused to circulate the petitions and this week is essentially calling for the legalization of homosexual unions as a matter of justice and equality. And a prominent Catholic writer asserted that a homosexual man who lived with his male partner is his role model, is one of the Church's finest ornaments, and is "very likely" a saint.
In prophecy St. Montfort saw our troubled time, when so many souls - even those within the Church [if only in a bodily manner - see Lumen Gentium, 14] are deserting the Lord Jesus in their minds and hearts and assembling against Him. In his Prayer for Missionaries, the great marian saint writes: "Look, Lord God of hosts, the captains of war are forming companies, each with its full complement of soldiers; and potentates have recruited vast armies. The ship owners have whole fleets at their disposal. What a motley assembly of ungodly men! Thieves, drunkards, and profligates gather together every day under the flimsiest pretexts in order to oppose you! Blow a whistle, beat a drum, show the blunt point of a sword, promise a withered laurel branch as a reward, offer a piece of gold or silver; in short, a whiff of fame, a worthless reward, a vile beastly pleasure and, in the twinkling of an eye, along come the thieves, soldiers rally by batallions and merchants flock together. Gambling dens and market places are crammed full and the whole of land and sea is covered with an innumerable multitude of reprobates. These people, although at variance among themselves for reasons of distance, temperament or personal interest, are nevertheless all unanimously resolved to wage war to the death against you, under the banner and leadership of the devil." (PM, 27).
Today so many are selling out Christ and His Church as surely as Judas did for a worthless reward - for earthly fame, for what the world considers "power," or for material gain or for what Montfort referred to as "a vile beastly pleasure" - what so many today regard as "harmless fun and sex games."
A motley assembly is gathering, an unholy assembly which will form the Mystical Body of Antichrist in opposition to the Mystical Body of Christ.