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May 20th, 2011
10:39 AM ET

Doomsday church: Still open for business

By Annalyn Censky, CNNMoney

New York (CNNMoney) - By now, you've probably heard of the religious group that's predicting the end of the world starts this weekend.

Harold Camping and his devoted followers claim a massive earthquake will mark the second coming of Jesus, or so-called Judgment Day on Saturday, May 21, ushering in a five month period of catastrophes before the world comes to a complete end in October.

At the center of it all, Camping's organization, Family Radio, is perfectly happy to take your money - and in fact, received $80 million in contributions between 2005 and 2009. Camping founded Family Radio, a nonprofit Christian radio network based in Oakland, Calif. with about 65 stations across the country, in 1958.

Read CNNMoney's story about Family Radio's financials, and why some employees are planning to come to work Monday

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: End times • Money & Faith

soundoff (105 Responses)
  1. Adelina

    I'm just waiting for CNN to start stopping reporting on this church. What a waste. I want to comment on nature and art, and I hope Q and EvolvedDNA will be there.

    May 21, 2011 at 4:56 am |
    • Adelina

      Praying for you, folks.
      @HeavenSent, thank you so much. You mean very much in my life.

      May 21, 2011 at 4:59 am |
    • prestyn676

      i knew it Harold Camping lied i hope they put him in prison and keep him thare for wat he did!!!! hes a lire and a conman that dosent deserv to be in the public!!!!

      May 21, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  2. raptureguy

    Some people are offering services if you are in need 🙂

    http://bloomington.craigslist.org/evs/2392419057.html

    May 20, 2011 at 11:06 pm |
  3. omg!!

    HAROLD CAMPING WROTE A GOOD BYE LETTER. READ IT HERE< FULL TEXT!!! OMG OMG OMG
    http://losangeles.ibtimes.com/articles/149487/20110520/harold-camping-may-21-2011-doomsday-goodbye-farewell-letter.htm

    May 20, 2011 at 10:24 pm |
  4. omg!!

    Center of Disease Control POSTED ZOMBIE GUIDE http://losangeles.ibtimes.com/articles/149450/20110520/cdc-centers-for-disease-control-zombie-preparation.htm

    May 20, 2011 at 10:22 pm |
  5. Frogist

    Just wanna say to my non-believer brothers and sisters: If we don't meet here on Monday, I'll see you beeyatches in Hell! I'll bring the potato salad.
    Have a great weekend!

    May 20, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
    • Peace2All

      @Frogist

      LOL...!!! I'll be lookin' for ya' Also, I like my potato salad with lotses of eggs...!

      Peace...

      May 20, 2011 at 7:54 pm |
  6. Q Bee

    The "Rapture" is a fantasy of John Nelson Darby, circa 1830. There is no biblical foundation for this nonsense because it purports a 2nd – second coming. Beyond that, the kingdom is already here.
    "The coming of the kingdom of God cannot be observed, and no one will announce, 'Look, here it is,' or 'There it is.' For behold, the kingdom of God is within you" (Luke 17:20-21).
    Fundamentalists need to study without the lens of these bogus prophets obscuring their thinking.
    And, by the way, the Book of Revelation is not about the future, but about the persecution under Nero. It would be a good idea to learn the literary genre of an 'apocalypse/revelation' before going off on a tangent.

    May 20, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Q Bee: But it's not just the fundamentalists who believe in the Rapture. Apparently a lot of mainstream Christians also believe. They are being very vocal in condemning these people. But since you say "The Kingodm of God is within you" ,are they wrong to believe too?

      May 20, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
  7. omg!!

    DID YOU ALL FORGET ABOUT THE MAYAN 2012 JUDGMENT DAY http://losangeles.ibtimes.com/articles/149323/20110520/harold-camping-may-21-doomsday-mayan-calendar-2012.htm

    May 20, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  8. AtheistSteve

    A public transit employee(retired) spent nearly all his life savings to put up signs throughout the New York Subway system. He plans to be in Times Square at the time of the Rapture. No doubt accompanied by newsreporters capturing his dismay when noting happens.

    May 20, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
    • Artist

      AtheistSteve

      A public transit employee(retired) spent nearly all his life savings to put up signs throughout the New York Subway system. He plans to be in Times Square at the time of the Rapture. No doubt accompanied by newsreporters capturing his dismay when noting happens.

      -----
      .
      He deserves everything that is going to happen to him. I suspect A. he will have to go back to work or B. commit suicide

      May 20, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  9. AtheistSteve

    Funny idea posted at The Thinking Atheist. Want to freak out people during the appointed time...Stick your shoes outside with dry ice in them.

    May 20, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Peace2All

      @AtheistSteve

      ROFLMAO...!!!!!! Now THAT is just too damn funny !!

      Thanks for the chuckle...

      Peace...

      May 20, 2011 at 10:07 pm |
  10. ProChoiceAtheist/Wife2AtheistSteve

    What makes this any more believable than any of the other false predictions???

    10 Failed Doomsday Predictions:
    1)The Prophet Hen of Leeds, 1806

    History has countless examples of people who have proclaimed that the return of Jesus Christ is imminent, but perhaps there has never been a stranger messenger than a hen in the English town of Leeds in 1806. It seems that a hen began laying eggs on which the phrase "Christ is coming" was written. As news of this miracle spread, many people became convinced that doomsday was at hand — until a curious local actually watched the hen laying one of the prophetic eggs and discovered someone had hatched a hoax.
    2)The Millerites, April 23, 1843

    A New England farmer named William Miller, after several years of very careful study of his Bible, concluded that God's chosen time to destroy the world could be divined from a strict literal interpretation of scripture. As he explained to anyone who would listen, the world would end some time between March 21, 1843 and March 21, 1844. He preached and published enough to eventually lead thousands of followers (known as Millerites) who decided that the actual date was April 23, 1843. Many sold or gave away their possessions, assuming they would not be needed; though when April 23 arrived (but Jesus didn't) the group eventually disbanded—some of them forming what is now the Seventh Day Adventists.

    3)Mormon Armageddon, 1891 or earlier

    Joseph Smith, founder of the Mormon church, called a meeting of his church leaders in February 1835 to tell them that he had spoken to God recently, and during their conversation he learned that Jesus would return within the next 56 years, after which the End Times would begin promptly.

    4)Halley's Comet, 1910

    In 1881, an astronomer discovered through spectral analysis that comet tails include a deadly gas called cyanogen (related, as the name imples, to cyanide). This was of only passing interest until someone realized that Earth would pass through the tail of Halley's comet in 1910. Would everyone on the planet be bathed in deadly toxic gas? That was the speculation reprinted on the front pages of "The New York Times" and other newspapers, resulting in a widespread panic across the United States and abroad. Finally even-headed scientists explained that there was nothing to fear.

    5)Pat Robertson, 1982

    In May 1980, televangelist and Christian Coalition founder Pat Robertson startled and alarmed many when — contrary to Matthew 24:36 ("No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven...") he informed his "700 Club" TV show audience around the world that he knew when the world would end. "I guarantee you by the end of 1982 there is going to be a judgment on the world," Robertson said.

    6)Heaven's Gate, 1997

    When comet Hale-Bopp appeared in 1997, rumors surfaced that an alien spacecraft was following the comet — covered up, of course, by NASA and the astronomical community. Though the claim was refuted by astronomers (and could be refuted by anyone with a good telescope), the rumors were publicized on Art Bell's paranormal radio talk show "Coast to Coast AM." These claims inspired a San Diego UFO cult named Heaven's Gate to conclude that the world would end soon. The world did indeed end for 39 of the cult members, who committed suicide on March 26, 1997.

    7)Nostradamus, August 1999

    The heavily obfuscated and metaphorical writings of Michel de Nostrdame have intrigued people for over 400 years. His writings, the accuracy of which relies heavily upon very flexible interpretations, have been translated and re-translated in dozens of different versions. One of the most famous quatrains read, "The year 1999, seventh month / From the sky will come great king of terror." Many Nostradamus devotees grew concerned that this was the famed prognosticator's vision of Armageddon.

    8)Y2K, Jan. 1, 2000

    As the last century drew to a close, many people grew concerned that computers might bring about doomsday. The problem, first noted in the early 1970s, was that many computers would not be able to tell the difference between 2000 and 1900 dates. No one was really sure what that would do, but many suggested catastrophic problems ranging from vast blackouts to nuclear holocaust. Gun sales jumped and survivalists prepared to live in bunkers, but the new millennium began with only a few glitches.

    9) May 5, 2000

    In case the Y2K bug didn't do us in, global catastrophe was assured by Richard Noone, author of the 1997 book "5/5/2000 Ice: the Ultimate Disaster." According to Noone, the Antarctic ice mass would be three miles thick by May 5, 2000 — a date in which the planets would be aligned in the heavens, somehow resulting in a global icy death (or at least a lot of book sales). Perhaps global warming kept the ice age at bay.

    10) God's Church Ministry, Fall 2008

    According to God's Church minister Ronald Weinland, the end times are upon us– again. His 2006 book "2008: God's Final Witness" states that hundreds of millions of people will die, and by the end of 2006, "there will be a maximum time of two years remaining before the world will be plunged into the worst time of all human history. By the fall of 2008, the United States will have collapsed as a world power, and no longer exist as an independent nation." As the book notes, "Ronald Weinland places his reputation on the line as the end-time prophet of God."

    this is taken from livescience's website...more false predictions can be found at http://www.religioustolerance.org/end_wrl2.htm

    or you can refer to these dates set out by JW's=Jehovah’s Witnesses, 1874, 1914, 1918, 1920, 1925, 1941, & 1975

    The point is that only the gullible believe that Jesus or whatever god they wish to falsely worship will return.

    I on the other hand will be enjoying a nice cold one and laughing at those foolish enough to read anything in to the fallacy that this is.

    See you Sunday!

    May 20, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • AtheistSteve

      Well said my love

      May 20, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    • Artist

      WHAT!!!!!!!!!!! atheists can't love

      May 20, 2011 at 5:03 pm |
  11. omg!!

    IS HAROLD A CRAZY FRAUD MAN?

    http://sanfrancisco.ibtimes.com/articles/149270/20110520/may-21-2011-doomsday-harold-camping-christian-leaders-evangelicals-end-of-the-world-false-prophet-fr.htm

    May 20, 2011 at 2:56 pm |
  12. PraiseTheLard

    The heck with this... I'm going camping this weekend...

    May 20, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
  13. Artist

    "The last thing people should be concerned with is what Family Radio is doing or what their assets are. They should be concerned with what I am doing and how I will stand before God."
    -----------------
    classic

    May 20, 2011 at 2:29 pm |
    • Frogist

      @Artist: Seriously? How far people will go to excuse the corruption in their midst if they perceive them as one of their own.

      May 20, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  14. omg!!

    H A R O L D C A M P I N G I S M E G A R I C H

    http://losangeles.ibtimes.com/articles/148239/20110519/may-21st-doomsday-does-harold-camping-s-ministry-have-money.htm

    May 20, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
    • Wipe0ut

      When all believers simultaneously will pee, it would END OF DAYS for all Atheists.

      But they don't need to worry much because they don't need no Noah's Ark to save them from the flood of pee, a regular-size canoe would be big enough to accomodate them all including their puppies.

      May 21, 2011 at 5:01 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.