Msgr. Parolin achieved notoriety in 2006 via the internet as a possible future Pope. A note about the papal prophecies of the medieval Abbot Malachy speculated that Parolin might be "Petrus Romanus" ("Peter the Roman") whom Abbot Malachy predicts will be the last Pontiff before the end of the world; some have referred to this apocalyptic figure as Pope Peter II. The Wikipedia entry reads: "Because no number is assigned to Petrus Romanus (Malachy's 112th "Pope"), it is possible that (Peter the Roman) may take on the role of the Pope without putting on the robe of the Pope. Under this possible scenario, a catastrophe at the Vatican could wipe out the top leadership of the Church during either a consistory or a conclave of the College of Cardinals. As a result, with no viable College surviving to elect a new pontiff, this particular scenario would have a surviving official of the Roman Curia succeeding to the top leadership of the Church but not as Pope. As he would not rise to the papacy itself but instead would become, in effect, the top caretaker of the Church, he would not need to assume a new papal name such as Peter; thus he would keep the name he has had since his birth in Italy, and that name already would be Peter (or, in Italian, Pietro). Currently (that is, as of March 2006) there is only one such candidate for Petrus Romanus within the Roman Curia. His name is Pietro Parolin..."We can't take such a prophecy as infallible of course but it's interestingly suggestive for anyone who believes as I do that we're right at the door of the revelation of the Antichrist:
2 Thessalonians 2:7-12 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.The prophecy has a "Peter the Roman" as the last Pope, to come in difficult times. Antichrist himself? False Prophet? Time will tell.
I thought for some time the last Pope would have to be Jewish. There have been some Jewish Popes in history. But the last candidate I was aware of died two years ago.