RELIGION

Alejandro Rodriguez de Cabo, Spanish Man, Predicted Pope Francis Before He Was Elected

03/15/2013 01:18 pm ET | Updated Mar 15, 2013

A 22-year-old man in Madrid apparently predicted who would be the next pope last month -- just a few hours before the pope emeritus announced his resignation.

Alejandro Rodriguez de Cabo's girlfriend, Yolanda De Mena, sent out a tweet on Feb. 11 claiming that earlier that morning her boyfriend had awoken with a strange premonition.

"My boyfriend woke up last night at 4 a.m. saying he had dreamed of a new pope called "Francis I" and Benedict resigned today," the message read.

Around the same time De Mena posted that tweet, news of Pope Benedict XVI's shocking resignation pronouncement began circulating around the globe. And this week, the second half of Rodriguez's remarkable "dream" came true, as the papal conclave selected Jorge Mario Bergoglio, now known as Pope Francis.

It just might be one of the greatest spoilers ever, user José Enrique Cabrero tweeted:

De Mena's tweet has since become a media and viral sensation, and by Friday morning, the message had been re-tweeted more than 80,000 times.

Rodriguez de Cabo, who seems mystified by the whole affair, has had his social media account flooded by well-wishers, as well as a few skeptics who wonder if the tweet's date might possibly have been rigged.

But despite the timestamp, some point out it's hard to argue with the Francis part of the prediction.

"There's no way to have altered the tweet to add Francis's name," The Daily Dot's Kris Holt writes. "It was either a lucky guess, or a prophetic dream about the new pope."

For his part, Rodriguez de Cabo thanked his new followers for their support and "those who've made me laugh."

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