By Kim Hutcherson and Dan Gilgoff, CNN
(CNN) – Harold Camping is sticking to his apocalyptic guns.
In his first radio broadcast since his doomsday prediction failed to pan out in a spectacularly public fashion, the California preacher insisted his was an error of interpretation, not fact.
What's more, he has another calculation for the day the world will end - October 21, 2011.
Camping had kept a low-profile since Saturday, the day he had forecast for the return of Jesus Christ to Earth. He and his devoted followers have been warning for months that on May 21, a select 2% to 3% of the world's population would be taken to heaven. Those left behind would face months of tribulation before perishing in the Earth's destruction, which Camping said would happen on October 21.
This is the basis for his new prediction, which Camping claims is not new at all. He told listeners on his Family Radio broadcast Monday that God is "loving and merciful," and had decided not to punish the humanity with five months of destruction.
But he maintains that the end of the world is still coming.
"We've always said October 21 was the day," Camping said during his show. "The only thing we didn't understand was the spirituality of May 21. We're seeing this as a spiritual thing happening rather than a physical thing happening. The timing, the structure, the proofs, none of that has changed at all."
However, Camping said his group would not be mounting another advertising push. In the months leading up to May 21, Family Radio billboards popped up across the country, warning that the end was near.
"We're not going to be passing out tracts," Camping said. "We're not going to put up any more billboards. We're not going to be advertising in any way. The world has been warned. We did our little share and the media picked it up. But now the world has been told, it's under judgment."
Fred Store, who led one of four RV caravans that toured the country in recent months to spread the word about judgment day, said he and other followers heard Camping's broadcast "and we were quite happy - it will be interesting to see what the next couple of months will bring."
"It appears as though this whole [rapture] thing happened in a spiritual, rather than a physical way," said Store, 66. The retired electrician said that he and the other nine members of his five-RV caravan were still at an RV park where they waited for the rapture to arrive on Saturday.
He said the park was within 100 miles of Boston, Massachusetts, but didn't want to disclose the specific location. He said the caravan was waiting for word from Camping's ministry, Family Radio, about arranging the return of the vehicles to the broadcaster's Oakland, California, headquarters.
Store said he and the others in his caravan were not disappointed that the dramatic events associated with the rapture had not come to pass.
"We think that judgment day did happen," he said. "It didn’t result in an earthquake, and there were a number of things that weren't exactly the way we said they would be, but we were only reading from the Bible. We’ve been humbled by the whole experience."
Camping founded Family Radio, a nonprofit Christian radio network with about 65 stations across the country, in 1958. It received $80 million in contributions between 2005 and 2009.
He first inaccurately predicted the world would end in 1994. Despite his poor track record, he has gathered many followers. Some gave up their homes, entire life savings and jobs because they believed the world was ending.
Reporters who were allowed to ask questions during the broadcast Monday pressed Camping on this issue, but he would not admit that he bore any blame for his followers' predicaments.
"I don't have any responsibility," Camping said. "I'm only teaching the Bible. I'm telling ... this is what the Bible says. I don't have spiritual rule over anybody ... except my wife as the head of the household."
Experts in apocalyptic movements said that reinterpretations like Camping's are not uncommon in the wake of failed doomsday predictions.
“Historically, failed prophecies tend to result in disillusionment, with members deserting the group, or, more typically, a faith-saving (and face-saving) statement to the effect that while divine revelation remains infallible, human calculation is not,” said Lorenzo DiTommaso, author of the forthcoming book “The Architecture of Apocalypticism” and an associate professor of religion at Concordia University in Montréal, Canada.
“In short: The math was off, and it’s back to the drawing board,” he said. “If the logic seems a bit self-serving, recall that in the apocalyptic mindset, faith precedes theory, and theory informs the evidence."
–CNN's Jessica Ravitz contributed to this report.
He should be made to pay back all the stupid people that blew their savings and everything else because of what he was trying to sell."
They are adults and made the choice of their own free-will. He should however be forced to donate to each child who endured this...they had no choice in the matter. These are kids who are being brainwashed because their delusional parents fell for this and if anything good comes from it, they deserve their educations paid for and to be removed from the homes of the people who neglected to keep them in mind during their delusions.
Dangerous precedent, if we all started to take kids away from parents that did not "think" or act in the way we feel is correct. Think about it, you would be removing kids from klan parents, to kids whose parents allow them to listen to gangster rap. It won't stop there, then it will be parent's who teach kids its wrong for sally to have two daddies and then to removing timmy in another instance because he has two mommies.
Take your kids to McDonalds, allowing your kids to play a dangerous sport. Taking your child to church and then not taking your child to church. The list can go on and on in what would happen if we start removing kids from parents just because of their religious, political or lifestyles.
It is the problem of such thinking, you never know if one day it might be aimed at you or your family.
I agree with you. Mark! Bad precedent!
A hamfisted enforcer of a gov't has replaced a hamfisted enforcer of a god for many, and what's worse, the gov't really exists.
JohnR agrees with me .....
ELIZABETH !!!...THIS IS THE BIG ONE .... I'M COMING TO JOIN YOU HONEY !!!...
Ok, Fred, er , Mark, You'll be fine... :-D
@ Mark from Middle River: Yes after all child $exual abuse is really just a different lifestyle (it’s even condoned in the bible)
Everything is up to interpretation Scott my friend. That's why we have so many denominations of Christianity. If we all viewed the Bible the same then Martin Luther wouldn't been searching for a hammer and a nail that night. :) Think about it, the laws of our land and how many lawyers do we have to interpret what the founding fathers meant?
I have seen churches that openly preached against gays and lesbians. I also have been to services in a church that caters to alternative lifestyles. The basics I hold is that to each person will read the Bible and get something different from it. Some will say it will change them. Some look at it and see how they can use it against groups they already hated in the first part. Some will read something and go out and devote their lives to soup kitchens and sheltering as many folks as they can.
Some folks will spend their time shouting that the world will end on .... so you better get yourself right with God before that date. I wonder this ... anyone find out how many in this sect dropped dead prior to Saturday? I mean from natural causes to getting hit by a bus? For me I would call this guy a bit off because I would be preaching to have your soul ready now, today... not on a date.
Okay, I stand corrected-not all children should be removed...however I do stand by the fact that innocent children were put at risk here...if they were being beaten, we'd consider that being put at risk...why should brainwashing be any different? All they do is raise the next generation of this type of person and that in itself can be damaging as we well saw by Camping's use of the media and the gullible parents/followers. Just my opinion...
looks like this dude failed algebra. Didnt think math was part of the world ending ordeal.
@Mark from Middle River
Enlightening logic for morning reading. I completely salute your theory on parental justice as it all boils down to the opinion between perspectives. I don't agree that these parents will be productive for themselves or children in any positive society, but that's only a perspective that could probably be proven otherwise in someone elses.
"I don't have spiritual rule over anybody ... except my wife as the head of the household." ---- So, a religion written by Man puts Man in control over Woman. Haven't you people figured it out yet? THERE IS NO GOD. All the religions were written by Man.
I agree with ProChoiceAtheist in the broader sense. If the kids are being harmed they need to be removed from the environment they are in. Yes, some might argue well then they will remove everyone's children for any reason then. But that's not so. Calling slippery slope is a weak argument. We have legal standards for what is abuse and what is not. I'm not sure they apply in this situation. But certainly the kids who went thru this were put under enormous emotional strain from what I've been reading. And for what? So they will have their lives turned upside down perpetually until Camping says he was wrong? Who knows where it will end? Either way these children should absolutely not have to endure the fear of death in that way and anyone who cannot see that needs some perspective. Shame on those parents.
Zeus is coming back on October 15th. Sounds ridiculous? How about another mythical character from 2,000 years ago coming back?
Hey, I NEVER LEFT
These people are not true followers of God if they insist on hoping for the death and destruction of billions of people around the world. They must be agents of the Devil.
For the most part, I agree with your statement. To bring up a child in a fundamentalist household is undoubtedly a form of abuse. Except in this case, the form of abuse directed towards children in those situations is, in my opinion, worse than that done by physical means. Instead of raising an angry fist (which I also do NOT condone), those people are threatening their children with "the fires of hell" and "eternal damnation", an inescapable sort of mental abuse meant to blind them with fear.
It is pathetic that religious indoctrination of children is permitted in this country.
"It has been a really tough weekend,"...AS IF!!! The man creates mass panic and has the audacity to say this. I think a room nicely padded with a wrap around coat is in order here. The man is clearly mentally ill and should pay for what he created.
Our only hope now is that he pas.ses on quickly and rids our wonderful planet of his delusions. He makes religion that much more unappealing to the rational mind. BTW: I don't feel empathy for the foolish adults who followed this wing-nut...I feel empathy for the innocent children who were forced by no fault of their own to endure this.
Xstians have a way of wasting people's time and resources. Indeed, overpopulation in Latin America might be attributed to catholic's stupidity.
@ProChoiceAtheist: I think mentally ill is one of a number of situations. It is very possible he is knowingly scamming these people for all they are worth. I doubt anyone will be getting their money back soon.
And I do have sympathy for these people who not only no longer have livelihoods, they also don't have that meeting with their Lord that they were so desperate for. It must devastating for those who really believed. Certainly, I think there is something off with their mental state. No normal person really believes the end of the world is coming May 21st @ 6pm. And certainly I believe their intentions had a cruelty and selfishness to it. But emotionally as human beings they must have been dealt a grave shock. I personally wish there was a way for them to face their delusions and come away a little more level-headed for it. But I think only a pshychiatrist could really be able to figure out how to do that for them.
Compassion is for those who deserve it.
Unfortunately there are plenty more where this guy comes from.
People who can't tolerate "not knowing" the unknown/unknowable facts about the Universe have, for millenia, tried to figure out how to "know." [Google "gnostics."] The "believers" reason (if that's even the correct word; perhaps "analogize" is better) from what they do know–the father of the family seems all-knowing to the children, is benevolent and a disciplinarian, etc. Thus, there must be a "Heavenly Father" who plays that role for all people.
I don't think he's mentally ill. He's figured out how to use religion to manipulate people and make money; that certainly takes some intellect. I think the people who believe him may be mentally ill though.
I've never understood why ppl quite their jobs when they believe the end is near. What's the point in being polite and giving a notice that you won't be at work if the Rapture happens? Who would care?
I don't think they quit on Friday. They've been off, spouting their nonsense for 6 months, give or take.
Yeah LinCa has a bit of a point, this did happen on a weekend. If you were a monday through friday job and he gave you this date a year ago, ,.. and you know it fell on a Saturday, why quit? Even if you were not a Monday through Friday worker why quit. Did they think that the Almighty would not be able to find them at work?
This is that live every day as if it were your last. If they believed that the Rapture were coming why just ask for that night off or not worry. Sorta, "I am going to work" ..."see you on the other side."
A lot of office buildings are built with steel framing. Maybe that works like a tin foil hat. Who knows, maybe you are invisible at work (I sure feel that way sometimes).
@Lycidas: I wonder why people think it's the end of the world at all. But I think calling out of work at least is better than that couple who maxed out their credit cards and went to Disneyland. They didn't want to pay for their debts and they were fine with that. At least those who called out etc were being considerate of who and what they are leaving behind. Personally, I might go the max out my credit card, tell my boss to go scrw themselves route. But I'm not exactly anticipating a God to judge me for my indiscretions like Christian rapturists are.
What an alibi!! Your souse disappears and you blame it on the rapture. What jury would buy that? I guess a jury of evangelical dolts.
Hey zues, it was you non-believers that changed the laws and now have murderers sitting on death row for life.
I think the point is not so much to be polite, as to not spend your last days sitting in a cubical counting beans for some jerk.
One of the things that get me is that this guy took in all this money. I didnt know how much but two weeks ago I was driving out of Jersey City and I saw a fleet of about 8 to 9 new and matching RVs heading towards the Holland tunnel. Each had the same paint and world coming to a end logos on them
I wonder who will be saddled with those payments.
He took in over 81 million and it looks like he's not done yet!
Sounds narcissistic to me. Cons come in all walks of life.
Supposedly God can make a miracle, but it seems he can't make money, your donations are needed.
One of the things that get me is that this guy took in all this money. I didnt know how much but two weeks ago I was driving out of Jersey City and I saw a fleet of about 8 to 9 new and matching RVs heading towards the Holland tunnel. Each had the same paint and world coming to a end logos on them. Just looked strange thing to spend money on.
Harold Camping is "looking for answers". Lucky for him, I have answers. The problem is not that he misunderstood the veiled message of the bible. Rather, it is that he believes in the truth of a very old book. This very old book was written by people whose ignorance of the natural world would embarrass a modern-day seven year old. For this reason, those long dead people attributed anything and everything to the supernatural. Harold, you would've been equally likely to successfully predict ANYTHING AT ALL about the future, had you used the Lord of the Rings instead of the bible.
And nine, nine Rings were gifted to the race of Men, who above all else, desire power. For within these Rings was bound the strength and will to govern each race. But they were all of them deceived...
First he separated himself from any organized churches because he disagreed with them.
Then claimed that the bible is the only truth.
Then when the bible said he couldn't predict the day, it became all but that truth....etc
Then used numerology, but whatever didn't fit that wasn't truth either....
Conclusion....his prediction was not based on the bible, but what he want it to be.
So... Sauron was to return to plague Middle Earth once again, but he failed to show? We better prepare the armies of man, lest we be unprepared for his return come October.
@Nightwyn: What you say is true. Except I would disagree about whether or not it was "based on the Bible". Every Christian claims to understand what to do, say, not engage in etc etc. But you won't find many Christians who agree on what those things are overall despite the fact that they claim their each perspective is "based on the Bible". In that sense, Camping is not very different from every other Christian. He found his proofs through his interpretation, just like every other person does.
JAberg123, do you mean these truths to be nonsense?
Genesis 2:7: "And the Lord God formed man of the DUST OF THE GROUND, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul." Surely, you don't take Genesis 2:7 seriously? Do you?
Psalm 8:8: ". . . whatsoever passeth through the PATHS OF THE SEAS." How did David (the writer of Psalms) know, over 2,000 years ago, there were "paths in the seas"? David probably never even saw an ocean!
Ecclesiastes 1:7: "All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again." How did the writer of Ecclesiastes know the water cycle of condensation and evaporation in 1000 B.C.?
Job 38:19: "Where is THE WAY where light dwelleth?" How come Job didn't say where is THE PLACE where light dwelleth? Because light is always moving. How did Job know something in 1500 B.C. ?
Ecclesiastes 1:6: "The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again ACCORDING TO HIS CIRCUITS." How did the writer of Ecclesiastes know the wind traveled within circuits? How did he know with their so-called limited knowledge thousands of years ago?
Leviticus 17:11: For the life of the flesh is in the blood. What Moses wrote in 1490 B.C. written thousands of years ago, by men with such limited knowledge?
None of you non- believers know what the above is called today if Christians didn't spell it out for you.
"None of you non- believers know what the above is called today if Christians didn't spell it out for you."
Christians have given us nothing other than fanaticism. Any of the things mentioned in that list had been "discovered" already by people in the past. Even the Mayans had more figured out in their time...oh, but you'd have to actually believe the world is older than a few thousand years for that to sink in.
The level of arrogance required to make such a statement is astounding, not to mention juvenile and, well, wrong.
Dixie Christian Community Vanishes; Lone Jew Strikes it Rich
I wonder if Camping didn't profess to be a christian, and used his calculations on hieroglyphs in Egypt if any would have followed him or donated to the cause.
There have been other kooky doomsday cults outside of Christendom. Remember the Solar Temple (or whatever it was called) suicides? Their effects have tended to be a lot less widespread, but often, as in this case, more drastic to those who were affected.
John, I believe you are thinking of Heaven's Gate. They also castrated themselves. Go figure.
Has anyone seen Family Radio's NEW WEBSITE? Not a word is mention about their COMPLETE FAILURE, but they do still have a donations link! Anywhere but America. these fools would be shutdown and prosecuted to the full extent of the law for such a scam.
If Camping had said something like – "Hey World!! Buy your tickets NOW!! To the show of the Century!! A Beatles Reunion tour with original lead singer John Lennon back from the dead!! Just show up in central park NY on June 1st, 2011!!" I'm thinking no one would have bought tickets... Instead he says "Hey World, guy thats been dead 2000 years is going to come back on Saturday and all the "saved" people are going to be raptured and the rest of you suckers get left behind!" and people hand over their cash...
And a Beatles reunion would have been a better show!!!
And still a million morons would've bought tickets.
RIP John Lennon.
Is that concert sold out yet?
"A page on the site still warned of the coming apocalypse, though the moment had already passed."
Not only are Camping's people false prophets and fearmongerers, they're also lazy. You'd think with all the donations they got from their duped followers, they could afford to update their site.
It seems a great many websites were taken up in the rapture
It's truly a shame that lunatics like these smear the good name of religion. All you shameless atheist anti-Christs think we are all crazy like the Family Radio people, but please understand this: They are crazy because they got the date wrong. We Christians are all united in our perfectly sane faith in the world ending pretty much the same way as this Camping guy said, but to get the date wrong, well, that's just crazy.
All religions except mine are totally crazy! Only the wild, unsupported pronouncements of my religion are correct! Yours are totally wrong! I have a really really really old book to prove it! That proves it!
My feet are potatoes. It says so right here in this book that was written 400,000,000,000 years ago. Who wants french fries?
“smear the good name of religion”!!!???. I sprayed beer out my nose all over the keyboard.
Eddie L. Long, – work in progress
Jim & Tammy Bakker
W. V. Grant,
Thomas Wesley Weeks,
George Alan Rekers,
"Amazing insights" says it all: simply amazing. One is ... so ... impressed...
You know, asrael, it's really very hard to satirize Christians these days. The craziest things I can come up with to mock their absurd thinking are always outdone by even crazier things that they actually believe.
Why just satirize Christianity? Might as well hit em all – all of em are just filled with either people wanting more than their sorry life or those taking advantage of others sorry , pathetic beliefs.
I want the Pope's job.
And atheist students of science will agree with you. In 4-5 billion years time the sun will expand and engulf the earth.
We just don't expect a lot of people to come flying out of their graves beforehand. BTW, what happens to people who were cremated?
Um, not all of us "Christians" think the world will end in the same way, so please don't lump me into your group.
This guy must have felt the same way I did, when at 7 years old I satyed up all night Christmas eve to meet the man himself. Turns out he's not real. The only difference was that at 7 I was smart enough to see the foolishness in a man going around the world in one night to give gifts to everyone. This guy will not have the same moment of Clarity. Too bad.
The phrase "good name of Religion" one of the saddest things I have ever heard. Religion is a good thing for some, but overall it is the scurge of the world, it has killed more people than Facism, communism combined. I would have included terrorism, but most terrorists kill in the name of god. Get a grip on reality, Religion is for the most part a very destructive factor in our world.
Bible said that no man shall know date or the hour ....and he made such a claim and now he is shocked ....
Better to live every day like it was your last.
Uh, many did live Saturday as if it were their last day, by spending all their money and maxing their credit cards and abandoning their families.
A bit more prudence and a lot less religion would have helped immensely.
You Said: "Better to live every day as if it were your last."
In my opinion...good advice for believers and non-believers alike.
Heck, Atheist or persons of Faith should live like everyday is their last. The thing is how would folks spend that last day. I love movie quotes.
Young Guns II
"William H. Bonney: You remember the stories John use to tell us about the the three chinamen playing Fantan? This guy runs up to them and says, "Hey, the world's coming to an end!" and the first one says, "Well, I best go to the mission and pray," and the second one says, "Well, hell, I'm gonna go and buy me a case of Mezcal and six w'hores," and the third one says "Well, I'm gonna finish the game." I shall finish the game, Doc. "
That is the difference, Some will look towards the last days as opprotunity and a cause to go wild. Some will go wild with prayer and some will go wild in other ways. The great thing that might come out of this is that people broke away from their 9-5 drone exisitance and took stock that life is a blessing. Be it the Athiest or the person of Faith. Folks were for a month,looking past their exisitance and thought maybe we should stop and at least smell the flowers.
Tim McGraw sung it best, "live like you were dying"
I guess movie quotes would be a crutch for people incapable of thinking for themselves. Religion and conservative talk radio serve the same purpose.
@ Mark & Peace2All : If only! I don't think we should live each day as if it were our last. We'd all either be wh0ring or praying non-stop at least according to Billy the Kid. And nothing we need in the long term would get done. I know if it was my last day, I would not be at work or my kids at school or keep that dentist appointment or take my car to the shop. And then tomorrow, I'd get fired, my kids would be dumber, my teeth would fall out and I'd have to take the bus to the unemployment office. That's the thing about life. We have responsibilities that need to be taken care of. Live as if today were your last is a nice saying, but it's not practical.
"Oops, I forgot to carry the one." -Harold Camping
BOOM Simpsons Reference
I believe the rest of that quote is "Oops, I forgot to carry the one... thing that would matter, a brain" -Harold Camping
This guy's family is laughing all the way to the bank because of their daft father/grandpa. He's raked in millions, all tax free!
How long will mankind be so darn gullible to continue to believe in organized religion? ALL religion is myth.
The sad thing is, as the earth's resources become even more strained by our burgeoning population, to the point of unsustainability, religion will probably get even wackier seeking future likeminded doomsday believers!
I was hoping for a "decrease the surplus population" after this weekend.
You said: "However, he does not owe taxes."
Good point. LOL
"I'm looking for answers," Camping told The Chronicle on Sunday
Really.... and you didn't think to do this before you embarressed your flock on Saturday? If there is a lesson in any of this it is to stop and think before we make any claim to knowledge, be it religious or scientific. The skeptics tell us to question everything....that means researching for yourself and educating yourself. If you wonder what a Bible passage means, learn what it says in the original languages and then decide. If you hear of a new scientific thought, don't take it at face value until you learn all the implications and underlying evidence. As the saying goes...study and find thyself approved....
Senile old goat makes an absurd prediction, and people flock to him to give him all their money.
This makes me seriously doubt the efficacy of evolution.
Oh, do let Jeff M know. He doesn't believe in evolution, either. ;)
thomas mc wrote: "This makes me seriously doubt the efficacy of evolution."
I don't know about that... Con artists have become better at their little schemes... This fellow, Camping, isn't doing too badly financially... I wonder if he's going to sell his donors' list to some Nigerian entrepreneur...
Hey, you find a talking goat that makes predictions it will have millions of followers on you tube tomorrow.
As to the evolution issue, the variable adaptation isn't always a good thing, sometimes you get two headed creatures or calves with 5 legs, the trait just doesn't get passed on. Mr. Camping is one of those.
Have you seen the movie Idiocracy??? When I originally saw it, I thought it just a low budget semi funny comedy. However, I have come to realize that it IS THE FUTURE!!!!!!!
He has $72 million reasons to not give a shiite what anyone thinks. He pulled one of the greatest pranks in history. Religious people are such tools.
My friend, you can't say all religious people are tools because one person who claims to be Christian acts badly.
Besides, there are many people who claim to be Christians who may not actually be so. Being Christian doesn't just mean believing in Jesus Christ; it means changing your lifestyle until we act and love like Christ.
> My friend, you can't say all religious people are tools because one person who claims to be Christian acts badly.
I don't think he is. The lesson here is that you cannot believe someone simply because they claim to know something about God, whether you read it or talk to the person.
The sad reality is that faith on the whole is all the same. A belief in something without evidence for, and therefore, no good reason.
That's why I think OP said that religous people are fools.
What goes good with crow? A nice chianti? Or maybe a nice tall glass of shut the flock up! (work with me on this one... trying to get around the censors... :-)
Mr. Camping, you owe an apology to everyone you LIED to!
However, he does not owe taxes.
He should be made to pay back all the stupid people that blew their savings and everything else because of what he was trying to sell.
Think about it if a business had done all the false advertising there would be penalties to pay. This nut job needs to be locked up.
yes, but anyone stupid enough to send him their money deserve exactly what they get. He should go to prison and all the fool's money should be doled out to the truly needy.
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.