Just what is the truth behind the Third Secret of Sutton Coldfield? Does it prophesise the end of the world, the fall of the Roman Catholic church or even the assassination of a world leader which will plunge the globe into a nuclear holocaust? Conspiracy theorists are demanding an answer after the Vatican chose, for the tenth year running not to reveal the Third Secret on the anniversary of the supernatural apparition during which the Three Secrets were revealed to a group of Sutton Coldfield school children. “It’s clear that the Catholic Church is suppressing the true nature of the Third Secret for fear that its revelation will spark mass panic around the world,” claims Ed Potz of Practical Conspiracies Digest. “Which means that it has to be something utterly terrifying and world shaking! Why else would they steadfastly refuse to reveal it for a whole decade?” While not as well known as the Three Secrets of Fatima – three visions and prophecies imparted to a group of Portuguese children by an apparition of the Virgin Mary in 1917 – the Three Secrets of Sutton Coldfield are believed by many to be equally significant. “The first two Secrets of Sutton Coldfield turned out to be incredibly accurate predictions of future events,” explains Potz. “The first correctly prophesised that Jack Dee would win the first Celebrity Big Brother, while the second predicted that Silver Birch would win the Grand National in 2007.”

The so called miracle, however, has been mired in controversy from the outset. “The three children who experienced the revelations claimed that they were playing in the park when they were approached by an ‘angel’ with out spread wings, grasping a ‘golden rod’,” recalls Potz. “Thee has always been some dispute as to the veracity of their account: the local police have always maintained that what they actually saw was a local flasher as his rain coat flapped open and that their subsequent account was the result of their minds trying to deal with the trauma of what they had actually seen.” Indeed, a notorious local sex offender was later arrested for exposing himself in the same park, but he always denied having anything to do with the incident involving the children and their supposedly divine vision. The prophecies imparted by the ‘angel’ only came to light after the children spoke to a local Catholic priest, who had found them wandering in the park and taken them back to his vestry. “He claimed that the children told him of the three prophecies they had been told of and wrote them down, putting each written secret into a separate envelope with the date of the prophecy on the front,” says Potz. “These were apparently then sent to the Vatican and the first two opened the day after the date of each prophecy. The third was due to be opened in 2009, the tenth anniversary of the original incident, but wasn’t. It still remains unopened, begging the question of what it is that the Vatican is trying to hide?”

Sceptics remain unconvinced of the veracity of the Three Secrets of Sutton Coldfield. “Those so called prophecies are, as they always are, incredibly vague, just like those ascribed to the likes of Nostradamus,” opines Horace Skillett, Senior Lecturer in Theology at the Redhill Institute of Horticulture. “The first one goes on about the ‘Fourth Knave’ attaining the ‘Great Fraternity of Fame’, which could mean anything, besides, why would a religious vision be prophesising the outcomes of reality TV shows and horse races?” Skillett also believes that the Third Secret will ultimately disappoint conspiracy theorists. “The truth is that the reason it still hasn’t been revealed is because it is absolute bollocks – probably utter gibberish,” he says. “The chances of it actually predicting anything of any significance is minimal.” The academic points to the revelation of the Third Secret of Fatima as an example of how such things can fall flat. “When it was finally revealed, it turned out to be a vague vision of the future whose elements, half ruined cities, huge crucifixes and an apparent martyrdom of a figure who might have been the Pope, which could be interpreted to fit any of the scenarios favoured by the conspiracy theorists,” he recalls. “Except that they weren’t satisfied by the revelation, claiming that it just wasn’t dramatic enough. There have been all sorts of allegations that either what was revealed wasn’t the ‘real’ third secret, or that it was only part of the third secret and that the real version is far more dramatic. Believe me, it will be same situation if and when the Third Secret of Sutton Coldfield is revealed.”

Potz remains undeterred in his quest for the true meaning of the Third Secret, speculating as to what sort of ‘revelation’ would it have to contain for the Catholic church to go to such extreme lengths to suppress it? “What would they think would disturb their congregation so much?” he asks. “Well, the only answer I could come up with is that it predicted a gay Pope. Such a revelation would rock the church to its core, threatening the whole fabric of its belief system.” In fact, in 2009, after the Vatican’s initial failure to reveal the Third Secret, a man claiming to be the last survivor of the three children who saw the original vision, (all had remained anonymous, but as adults, one had reportedly gone mad and thrown themselves under a bus, while a second had died in an auto erotic sex accident), went public with his own revelation, telling notorious tabloid The Daily Norks, that he and his friends had been shown a vision of a ‘man in white’, who they presumed to be the Holy Father, getting it on with another guy. “He was involved in a gang bang with a conclave of Cardinals,” he told the tabloid. “Then in another part of he vision, we saw him getting down and dirty with the leaders of other faiths – cavorting with the Archbishop of Canterbury, enjoying a tryst with the Dalai Llama and even embracing the Chief Rabbi.”

While the alleged survivor was later discredited, being revealed as a former monk facing charges of manufacturing indecent images of choir boys, Potz believes that there might actually be something in his claims. “It turned out that he had known the priest who originally transcribed the secrets, so it is possible that he might have had access to them,” he says. “The fact is that the sub-text of what he described is clear: not only should the church embrace homosexuality, but it should also use the power of inter faith buggery to unite with other denominations, to create one global, all encompassing religion celebrating a non-gender specific deity of universal sexual orientation. I mean, forget the apocalypse, this is the sort of thing that would really disturb the Catholic church.” Potz speculates that an openly gay Pope would inevitably result in huge numbers of Catholic priests coming out of the closet, not to mention ordinary churchgoers finally feeling that it was safe to come out as gay or lesbian. “Where would it end? Churches painted in rainbow colours? Bishops in full regalia hanging out in gay bars?” he muses “It just doesn’t bear thinking about – no wonder they want to suppress the Third Secret of Sutton Coldfield!”