The Didache and Prophets

Reading the Didache, we find that in the ancient Church, prophets were a part of the landscape:
Chapter 11. Concerning Teachers, Apostles, and Prophets. Whosoever, therefore, comes and teaches you all these things that have been said before, receive him. But if the teacher himself turns and teaches another doctrine to the destruction of this, hear him not. But if he teaches so as to increase righteousness and the knowledge of the Lord, receive him as the Lord. But concerning the apostles and prophets, act according to the decree of the Gospel. Let every apostle who comes to you be received as the Lord. But he shall not remain more than one day; or two days, if there’s a need. But if he remains three days, he is a false prophet. And when the apostle goes away, let him take nothing but bread until he lodges. If he asks for money, he is a false prophet. And every prophet who speaks in the Spirit you shall neither try nor judge; for every sin shall be forgiven, but this sin shall not be forgiven. But not every one who speaks in the Spirit is a prophet; but only if he holds the ways of the Lord. Therefore from their ways shall the false prophet and the prophet be known. And every prophet who orders a meal in the Spirit does not eat it, unless he is indeed a false prophet. And every prophet who teaches the truth, but does not do what he teaches, is a false prophet. And every prophet, proved true, working unto the mystery of the Church in the world, yet not teaching others to do what he himself does, shall not be judged among you, for with God he has his judgment; for so did also the ancient prophets. But whoever says in the Spirit, Give me money, or something else, you shall not listen to him. But if he tells you to give for others’ sake who are in need, let no one judge him.

Chapter 13. Support of Prophets. But every true prophet who wants to live among you is worthy of his support. So also a true teacher is himself worthy, as the workman, of his support. Every first-fruit, therefore, of the products of wine-press and threshing-floor, of oxen and of sheep, you shall take and give to the prophets, for they are your high priests. But if you have no prophet, give it to the poor. If you make a batch of dough, take the first-fruit and give according to the commandment. So also when you open a jar of wine or of oil, take the first-fruit and give it to the prophets; and of money (silver) and clothing and every possession, take the first-fruit, as it may seem good to you, and give according to the commandment.

How do you view this, as well as prophets throughout the history of the Catholic Church down through the ages?

God gives prophets, healers, miracle workers to us when needed. They were necessary more in the early Church when the faith was spreading to people and lands unfamiliar with Christianity or Judaism. They were needed to give some assurance to the people that the Apostles and the first Christians were spreading truth. We need it from time to time, but in our day and age, we already have the evidence of the prior prophets, healers and miracl workers.

So is it your view that prophets are no longer needed today (by today I mean post early days of the Church, as per your description above)?

If you don’t mind, I might offer an opinion. I think prophets have always been a part of the Church from the beginning, right up to the present day. There may not be an official ‘position’ or title of ‘prophet’ amongst the clergy, but there is an abundance of evidence of saints that have been privileged with visions, some of which have also included various prophecies. Just after Pentecost, when the Apostles were preaching in Jerusalem, the Acts Of the Apostles says this: “Acts 2: [15] For these are not drunk, as you suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day:
[16] But this is that which was spoken of by the prophet Joel: [17] And it shall come to pass, in the last days, (saith the Lord,) I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams. [18] And upon my servants indeed, and upon my handmaids will I pour out in those days of my spirit, and they shall prophesy.”
Fatima Portugal is just one of many recent occurrences that prove this can happen, and will happen more and more frequently, until Jesus comes again. In fact, there are many people around the world that claim to be receiving ‘messages from Heaven’. Most of them are very unlikely to be authentic, but there are probably at least a few of them that might be true. Of course, we have to be very careful about believing in any of these people claiming to have apparitions. We should always ‘test the spirits’ to make sure that what they promote is in keeping with the teachings of the Catholic Church, first and foremost. But, many people would be surprised to find out just how many there are out there that make such claims.

If we remember that the ‘last days’ actually began at Pentecost, it should be no surprise that prophecies would also continue, until the end of time. JMHO

I think it waxes and wanes, as the needs of the Church arise. We are entering another calamitous time for the Church soon, so we may see more prophets spring up.

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