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June 30, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — What if I told you that there was someone who prophesied in the early 1980s that Donald Trump would bring America back to God? 

The other day a close friend came over and mentioned such a prophecy. 

It was actually contained in a somewhat viral video from a few years ago done by a Catholic priest. 

That video was viewed over half a million times, and it recounted the story of this Catholic priest’s visit with a holy Catholic man in Loreto, Italy. He called him the “hermit of Loreto.” 

The prophecy about Trump, however, was told not directly to the priest by the hermit, but to the priest’s friend — and he relayed it in his video. 

When I heard this, I remembered the story and actually thought we already covered it at LifeSite at the time. When I looked in our archives, we hadn’t.

Now, when I reviewed the video I noticed that it was secondhand information. And, as things happen sometimes, the news cycle moved on, and we didn’t publish a story on it.

In the wake of the historic letter from Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò to President Trump and the president’s own recognition of it, that prophecy has taken on new significance. 

As Providence would have it, I was able to speak with the original source of the story — Dr. Claude Curran (more on him in a minute).

In 1997, a video by Fr. Giacomo Capoverde from Rhode Island went viral with over half a million views. 

The video is Fr. Capoverde talking about his friend Dr. Claude Curran, a psychiatrist who encouraged him when he was going on a visit to Rome to travel to Loreto, Italy to meet a holy man who spent all his life praying in churches. 

And in the video, he told the story related to him by Dr. Curran about the holy man’s prediction about Donald Trump.

That video was posted on February 17, 2017.

A few weeks later, on March 6, 2017, there was an intriguing confirmation of some aspects of the story.

An American living in Loreto working as a tour guide was barraged with emails asking him to check out the veracity of the story. 

So Bret Thoman, who runs St. Francis Pilgrimages, began an investigation, since he had never heard of the so-called “holy man” — whose real name is Tom Zimmer, a World War II veteran.

The tour guide, although a devout Catholic, described his reaction to the video as “somewhere between skepticism and suspicion.”

Knowing the friars who run the Church where Tom Zimmer was said to have spent almost all his time, Thoman spoke to one of the friars who remembered him as “L’Americano” (the American).

Thoman recounts that the friars “found him to be courteous and polite, if not a little ‘particular.’” 

Tom purportedly attended upwards of four or five Masses every day and spent the rest of his time praying.

Thoman was directed to another friar — Fr. Sanatarelli, who had been at Loreto for decades — and as soon as Thoman began describing the American who prayed, Fr. Sanaterelli cut him off, saying “Ah sì, Thomas Zimmer, si chiamava…certo che mi ricordo…” (“Ah yes, Thomas Zimmer was his name, of course I remember him…”). 

He went on to say everyone in Loreto knew of him.

Although Fr. Sanatarelli didn’t know anything about the Trump prophecy made by Tom, he could confirm that Tom was in Loreto going to Mass and praying most of the day before he returned to America in 2008.

The friar actually had a photo of Tom Zimmer, which he showed Bret Thoman, who included it in his blog post.

Bret Thoman concluded his investigation into Tom Zimmer this way: “I have no reason to doubt Fr. Capoverdi’s statements that Thomas Zimmer communicated to his friend that he received a ‘premonition’ that Donald Trump would ‘lead America back to God.’”

With regard to the Trump prophecy’s accuracy, he said, that remains to be seen.

I was able to track down Dr. Claude Curran, the original source of the information Fr. Capoverde shared in his video.

Dr. Curran is still a practicing psychiatrist in Fall River, Massachusetts. He too is a devout Catholic with five children. 

Dr. Curran met Tom Zimmer while in St. Peter’s Square when John Paul II was elected pope. 

Several years later, in 1983, Tom told Dr. Curran in St. Peter’s that “right now, in the United States, there’s a man who has the hand of God on him. He has the I.Q. of a genius. And a first-class education. And everything he approaches he attacks with blinding efficiency…his name is Donald Trump.” 

Dr. Curran informed Tom that the man he was speaking about was actually known to be a high-flying, jetsetting millioniare who dated models.

“No, Claude,” he said, “I’m telling you, the hand of God is on him, and God is going to use him in the future.”

“Claude, I am so convincd about what I’m telling you,” Tom continued, “that I have bought a memorial brick for Donald J. Trump, I put his name on it, and he will now benefit from all the masses and prayers in the Vatican for as long as that brick remains in the Holy Door.”

In 2017, Fr. Capoverde already believed that the prophecy of Tom Zimmer was fulfilled in President Trump because Melania Trump led a huge public meeting by praying the Lord’s prayer.

Just think how much more see we’ve seen Trump bring America back to God since then.

And there is no one better to describe that than the former apostolic nuncio — that is, papal representative to the United States of America — Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò.

At LifeSite, we were privileged to be asked by Archbishop Viganò to publish his open letter to President Trump, and when the president himself retweeted it and spoke of his thanks and admiration for Archibhsop Viganò, it was tremendous. 

It is in fact in the archbishop’s letter to President Trump that the fulfillment of that 1983 prophecy of Tom Zimmer can be seen even more clearly.

Archbishop Viganò wrote:

For the first time, the United States has in you a President who courageously defends the right to life, who is not ashamed to denounce the persecution of Christians throughout the world, who speaks of Jesus Christ and the right of citizens to freedom of worship. Your participation in the March for Life, and more recently your proclamation of the month of April as National Child Abuse Prevention Month, are actions that confirm which side you wish to fight on. And I dare to believe that both of us are on the same side in this battle, albeit with different weapons.

Mr. President, my prayer is constantly turned to the beloved American nation, where I had the privilege and honor of being sent by Pope Benedict XVI as Apostolic Nuncio. In this dramatic and decisive hour for all of humanity, I am praying for you and also for all those who are at your side in the government of the United States. I trust that the American people are united with me and you in prayer to Almighty God.

Tom Zimmer was real, and saintly. He did make that prophecy about President Trump in 1983, and, if it has at least in part been fulfilled already, maybe with Tom’s intercession for America — his homeland — and for President Trump, we’ll see the president do even more to bring America back to God in the future.

The John-Henry Westen Show is available by video on the show’s YouTube channel and right here on my LifeSite blog.

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John-Henry is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of LifeSiteNews.com. He and his wife Dianne and their eight children live in the Ottawa Valley in Ontario, Canada.

He has spoken at conferences and retreats, and appeared on radio and television throughout North America, Europe and Asia. John-Henry founded the Rome Life Forum an annual strategy meeting for pro-life leaders worldwide. He co-founded Voice of the Family and serves on the executive of the Canadian National March for Life Committee, and the annual National Pro-Life Youth Conference.  

He is a consultant to Canada’s largest pro-life organization Campaign Life Coalition, and serves on the executive of the Ontario branch of the organization.  He has run three times for political office in the province of Ontario representing the Family Coalition Party.  

John-Henry earned an MA from the University of Toronto in School and Child Clinical Psychology and an Honours BA from York University in Psychology.

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