December 17th, 2013
01:43 PM ET

Radio preacher who predicted doomsday dies

(CNN) - The broadcast preacher who predicted the world would end in 2011 and spread his doomsday message through billboards and RV caravans has died, according to a statement from his Family Radio network.

Harold Camping died Sunday afternoon after suffering a fall in his home on November 30, the statement said. He had suffered a stroke in June 2011, a few weeks after his doomsday date came and went.

He died at age 92, an operator at Family Radio said.

"He passed away peacefully in his home, with his family at his side," the statement said. Camping is survived by his wife of 71 years, Shirley.

For months in early 2011, Camping predicted that Jesus Christ would return to the earth on May 21 that year, and that a select 2% to 3% of the world’s population would be raptured, or 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, 2011.

MORE ON CNN: Road trip to the end of the world

When his May 21 prediction failed to pan out, Camping took the radio airwaves to say that he had misinterpreted the nature of the rapture but that the world would still end on October 21.

The following year, Camping admitted he was wrong and said he was getting out of the forecasting business.

"We humbly acknowledge we were wrong," Camping and his staff members wrote in a letter to supporters posted on Family Radio's website in March 2012.

"We must also openly acknowledge that we have no new evidence pointing to another date for the end of the world. Though many dates are circulating, Family Radio has no interest in even considering another date."

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 had gathered many followers. Some gave up their homes, entire life savings and jobs because they believed the world was ending.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: End times

soundoff (1,057 Responses)
  1. Free Nuts


    December 18, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
  2. lol??

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    You forgot the 1,000 year buffer.

    December 18, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
  3. Wayne

    It is sad that there are so many false prophets.

    The Prophet Jeremiah warned us of this in Jeremiah chapter 23 ....


    December 18, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
    • Beans

      Well, I will warn you about it today.

      ALL "prophets" are either blowing hot air or are making guesses (sometimes so v.ague and general that they can be rationalized and interpreted to have "come true").

      December 18, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
      • Wayne

        And there are True Prophets, called by God, speaking for God.

        You could listen to God speak if you wanted to .... and that is the problem, you really do not want to.


        December 19, 2013 at 11:32 pm |
    • G to the T

      So a prophet tells you to ignore false prophets... don't see any irony there at all?

      December 18, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
      • Wayne

        No. False prophets are not ironic. Real Prophets are not ironic, they are called by God to speak for God ....

        The irony is that man can listen, but chooses not to listen.

        December 19, 2013 at 11:33 pm |
  4. Grumpy


    December 18, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
    • Wayne

      The comments section looks strange ....

      December 18, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
  5. lol??

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    It gets worse. The rapturists dis their own born again birthright and try to shuv it onto the not-a-jews. It's a peculiar form of pharisaical racism. It's way over the head of any A&A.

    December 18, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
  6. Ivan

    Only an idiot could predict such a calamity!

    December 18, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • Topher

      Well, thanks for the vote of confidence, but I really don't think I could predict this either.

      December 18, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
  7. children of Israel

    In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. – Revelation 22:13-14 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. – St. Matthew 19:17 but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.

    December 18, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • fintastic

      "I didn't put my name in that cup, I don't want eternal glory." [Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire]

      fiction and fiction

      December 18, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
    • rick-o

      Quotes from a book of mythology........ yawn.

      December 18, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
    • Reality # 2

      Nineteenth-century agnostic Robert G. Ingersoll branded Revelation "the insanest of all books".[30] Thomas Jefferson omitted it along with most of the Biblical canon, from the Jefferson Bible, and wrote that at one time, he "considered it as merely the ravings of a maniac, no more worthy nor capable of explanation than the incoherences of our own nightly dreams." [31]

      Martin Luther once "found it an offensive piece of work" and John Calvin "had grave doubts about its value."[32]

      And the other "thu-mptation"? Historically nil !!!

      December 18, 2013 at 3:57 pm |
      • UncleBenny

        Maniac? I think it reads more like someone on a really bad acid trip. Did they discover LSD back then?

        December 18, 2013 at 5:18 pm |
  8. lbdukeep

    Mc123, I was just going to say – he didn't predict his own doom (death) day.... shows ya to what extent some people will go to get publicity or attention. Oh well...........here comes the bus!

    December 18, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
  9. 7

    Hello Folks.

    Everyone is invited to visit


    December 18, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
  10. Deep Thoughts

    "If God dwells inside us like some people say, I sure hope He likes enchiladas, because that’s what He’s getting."
    –Jack Handey

    December 18, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
  11. Robert Landbeck

    As 'Christianity' has been retailing a counterfeit Gospel to humanity for most of the last two thousand years, this event hardly matters except to remind us that anytime, anyone suggests they have understood the mind of God, whether ancient theology or modern prophesy, they expose themselves as a fraud. Should God ever decide to reveal Himself to the visible world, it won't be by way of religion as we have come to understand that idea from history and tradition. http://www.energon.org.uk

    December 18, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
  12. Rob

    CNN is such a tabloid.

    December 18, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
    • Niknak

      Rob is such a tool.

      December 18, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
  13. children of Israel

    (Proverbs 30:4 is asking you a question) The most high God Ahayah and his son Yashiya / Christ. The world will bow down to the God of the Hebrews or be put to death. – Psalm 59:13 and let them know that God ruleth in Jacob unto the ends of the earth. Selah.

    December 18, 2013 at 1:41 pm |
    • doobzz

      Why does your god always have to get people to follow him at the point of a sword? Believe in me or die.

      But he loves you!

      December 18, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
      • JesusLovesYou

        we were all born into sin and death.....it is only through Christ that we receive everlasting life. It is not believe in him or he kills you......It is believe in Him and He saves you!

        December 18, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
        • doobzz

          No, we weren't all born into sin. Sin is a construct of man and has been used to manipulate humans into all sorts of behaviors, including killing those who don't believe the same fantasy.

          And whether you put pretty words around it or not, your god promises to roast me forever if I don't believe, so it's believe or suffer the consequences.

          December 18, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
        • Hugh Jass

          I haven't committed any sins, and I wasn't born dead. Are you sure you know what you are talking about?

          December 18, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
        • sam stone

          all born into sin and death?

          boy, are you gullible

          December 18, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
        • Reality # 2

          (from Professor Crossan's book, "Who is Jesus" co-authored with Richard Watts)

          "Moreover, an atonement theology that says God sacrifices his own son in place of humans who needed to be punished for their sins might make some Christians love Jesus, but it is an obscene picture of God. It is almost heavenly child abuse, and may infect our imagination at more earthly levels as well. I do not want to express my faith through a theology that pictures God demanding blood sacrifices in order to be reconciled to us."

          "Traditionally, Christians have said, 'See how Christ's passion was foretold by the prophets." Actually, it was the other way around. The Hebrew prophets did not predict the events of Jesus' last week; rather, many of those Christian stories were created to fit the ancient prophecies in order to show that Jesus, despite his execution, was still and always held in the hands of God."

          "In terms of divine consistency, I do not think that anyone, anywhere, at any time, including Jesus, brings dead people back to life."

          December 18, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
    • sam stone

      your god is a punk

      December 18, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
  14. Marcus B

    This guy was a great con artist and proved that there is a sucker born every minute.

    December 18, 2013 at 1:41 pm |
  15. mc123

    Wonder if he predicted his own dooms day ...

    December 18, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
  16. doobzz

    I wonder why they replaced the picture of him smiling from yesterday. At least he looked like he was still alive in that one.

    December 18, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
  17. The Don

    Bet he didn't see that coming .... Wayhey!!!!

    December 18, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
  18. SkepticToTheCore

    Quack passes and death passes for news...

    December 18, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
  19. rosethornne

    In this day and age, that anyone would actually believe such a ridiculous thing, is astonishing.

    December 18, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
  20. children of Israel

    Christ is coming back for war. Why is their an apartheid and much volience in his holy land of Jacob – Exodus 15:3 The Lord is a man of war: the Lord is his name. – 2nd Corinthians 10:4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)

    December 18, 2013 at 12:54 pm |
    • igaftr

      Which side will Superman be on? Loch ness monster? Bigfoot?

      December 18, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
    • Austin

      thats a good point. how can we repay evil with another evil.? the only answer for the entire world is the promise of the New Covenant......a promise that we can be supernaturally healed within.

      We were not instructed to reorganize a new world order through secret societies or corporate fraud, or to restructure the world government and then proceed to administer state religion.

      no........our kingdom does not war against flesh and blood. Our freedom is in Christ.

      December 18, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
      • Niknak

        You wanna heal from within, Autism?
        Then get off the American industrial food complex diet and go vegan.
        Heal yourself and the earth, plus support sustainable farming while getting to spend quality time with your significant other cooking and eating together.

        December 18, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • G to the T

          Sorry but being "vegan" is just as unnatural as anything else. Take a look at your teeth and digestive tract sometime. We are OMNIVORES. Now you can have a specific gripe with the production/quality of food, but there's nothing superior about being a veggie or a vegan.

          December 18, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
        • rick-o

          More people globally could be fed on existing land if we all became vegans.

          December 18, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
        • Harry Pancake

          @G th T "but there's nothing superior about being a veggie or a vegan."

          A vegetarian diet has been proven to be a healthier lifestyle. Denying that is kinda like denying evolution...

          December 19, 2013 at 9:26 am |
      • Doris

        "supernaturally healed within."

        Some are more supernatural than others. Phenolphthalein when prunes before bedtime might suffice for instance.

        December 18, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • Madtown

      Christ is coming back for war.
      That sounds very loving.

      December 18, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
      • Deus Ibi Est

        Christ is coming back for JUDGEMENT.
        He told us and showed us how to live. If we follow Him we join Him in Heaven. If we DENY Him we condemn ourselves to hell. OUR choice.

        December 18, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
        • Name*Bro

          Id rather burn in "hell" than worship a narcissistic god who creates a world to worship him. Megolomaniac much?

          December 18, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
        • Madtown

          He told us and showed us how to live
          Not for all of us, he didn't. What about the people who have no knowledge of Christ? Is God just going to discard them? Why are you so special?

          December 18, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
        • sam stone

          judgement is a hoax

          you are a slave

          December 18, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
        • Harry Pancake

          FYI........ no such place as heaven or heII, just man made concepts, simple mythology.

          December 19, 2013 at 9:29 am |
    • Jesus

      No, man, I'm mellow this time. We're all gonna have a good time. You can put those hammers away.

      December 18, 2013 at 2:06 pm |
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About this blog

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.