ALAMEDA, Calif. - The day after his prediction that the world would end on May 21, 2011 failed to materialize, Harold Camping told the San Francisco Chronicle he was "flabbergasted."
The 89-year-old fundamentalist minister and head of the Family Radio media empire, who had led his Christian followers to believe last Saturday marked the Rapture and the countdown to Judgment Day, told the Associated Press that he will make a full statement on his radio broadcast later on Monday.
But when he answered the door at his Alameda home to San Francisco Chronicle reporter Will Kane on Sunday, Camping said he was looking for answers - through frequent prayer and discussions with friends - as to why his prediction of the Rapture and the run-up to the destruction of Earth had not come to pass.
"It has been a really tough weekend," said Camping.
Some of Camping's followers say they are surprised they were not swept up to heaven, after Camping preached for years through his Oakland-based Family Radio International media empire that the Rapture was coming on May 21.
Camping had previously predicted the Rapture would occur back in 1994. When it didn't, he explained that an error in his mathematical computations from clues in the Bible were to blame, and he later revised his forecast.
Monday, May 23, 2011
Was this how the world was supposed to end, if that had been true?
A woman allegedly gave her child Botox. Arnold Schwarzenegger has an illegitimate child. A popular wrestler died. Oprah Winfrey just has three shows left. A popular preacher from California thought the world was going to end last Saturday at 6PM (the Rapture).
These are things I thought I'd never see mentioned in the same sentence, let alone that I never thought I'd blog about any of them. But I couldn't help thinking how strange it was hearing them all in one week and how strange it might have been that if the world had indeed ended, these would have been the last things we ever saw or heard.
I have never really liked Arnold Schwarzenegger, but since I'm from California, I had to deal with him being our state's Governor for seven years. I can only recall ever seeing a handful of his movies, just one or two of his comedic roles. I'm not much for the action flicks, for which he is best known. I vote Democrat, meaning I did not vote for him back in 2003, but just the same I was suspicious of him becoming the winner. And of course last week news broke first about him and Maria Shriver splitting after 25 years of marriage. And then we learned Arnold had a child by former employee and that his love child was born only a few days after his youngest child with Shriver.
I'm not a sports person, but I did not escape the news that wrestler Randy "Macho Man" Savage had died last Friday. A blog I regularly follow was the first place I heard this, followed by the local six o'clock newscast. And while checking my Twitter page last Saturday, I saw the following. Could this really be why the rapture didn't happen? :-)
And is the Botox Mom for real? Enough about that one.
And although the world didn't end on the projected date of last Saturday, one thing that will be ending for sure is Oprah Winfrey's long-running talk show, something she announced back in November of 2009. I have never liked her much either, for the last month or so I have been tuning into just to see her last few shows. I watched her recent interview with Chazz Bono. I felt compelled to watch this one after seeing several promos for this upcoming episode. And the last three shows air this week. Again, though I never really cared for her, I plan to see the last three shows this week.
Could you have imagined that these would be the last things you'd ever hear before the world ended, if that had happened as projected? Had the world ended as predicted, it would have ended before Oprah's show did.
The minister from California who had projected May 21, 2011 as the day of the rapture is now flabbergasted. From CBS news:
Somehow I have no recollection of his prediction of the world ending in 1994. Oddly, the calendar dates were the same that year as this one, thus May 21 was on a Saturday that year also. That was also the year that people began getting into the Internet. I don't recall any similar stories then to those that broke just before the predicted rapture date of 2011. Arnold was still just a film star then and his unknown child wasn't even conceived yet (nor was his youngest son). Oprah's show was still popular (she was then two years away from her show's 10-year anniversary), and did anyone even know what Botox was back then? What else was making headlines in 1994 when Harold Camping was making his end-of-the world prediction for that year?
I certainly was not convinced the world as going to end last Saturday. Even though there were two earthquakes that day, one in New Zealand and another in the San Francisco area, there was no Rapture. And they said at 6PM--6PM in what part of the world? I have no clue what time it was here when the New Zealand quake hit that country, but I know they are a day ahead of the US. And I didn't even feel the quake in San Francisco, even though I'm about 100 miles south of S.F. I usually feel quakes centered in that area.
Even though I wasn't convinced of the world ending, I said to my family that day that I love them in case the world did end. And that I would call them the next day if we were all still around. And we are.
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