- (Photo: The Christian Post / Hudson Tsuei)
Despite Harold Camping's insistence that the world would come to an end on Oct. 21, it has been business as usual for his Family Radio network, with employees working, programming remaining unchanged and donations still being requested.
The lack of changes comes as a surprise since the president and founder of the radio network told the world's residents that they would be quietly raptured to heaven or annihilated, depending on their standing with God, on Friday. Camping's Oct. 21 prediction came just five months after his second wrong end of the world prediction, which the radio evangelist had claimed was the start of a "spiritual" judgment, a prelude to the "physical" judgment he predicted would come, now three days overdue.
An unidentified host on Family Radio mentioned the lack of an apocalypse the day after Camping's failed doomsday date, telling listeners on Oct. 22 who might have been saddened at not having been raptured, not to lose hope.
"I know that many of us are deeply disappointed that Christ did not come. And I said something like this back in May," the host said, as previously reported by The Christian Post. "But please try to keep in mind that all of us who are believers, all of us who are Christians, are to live in such a way that we are to pray with the apostle John: 'Come quickly Lord Jesus.' "
The radio network also released a statement to address what believers should do since the world has been going on as usual.
"Thy command is still to occupy until he comes," Family Radio reminded supporters. "We are still to go teach and tell. We are to share his word by reading it, teaching it, and singing it. We still have a unique tool and that tool is radio on which we can bring comfort and encouragement. Every day we, who are Christians, live in attention. We are to live so that we are ready for the return of Christ, and even pray for it. But we also rejoice in every new day, that we've been given another day to occupy and serve our Lord."
Family Radio, which was reported to have collected approximately $100 million in donations leading up to the May 21 "judgment day" and spent most of it on doomsday warning advertising, has asked listeners to keep up their financial support while getting ready for the end of the world, whenever that will be.
"I trust that you too will pray for us often that we can minister in many ways," the host said. "That God will provide wisdom to those of leadership and that we continue to minister to you, and to teach God's word daily. Please pray for us and pray about continuing to support this totally listener-sponsored Christian radio network. We have a great need for daily operating funds. Without your generous support at this time we might be forced to face some very important decisions.I trust those of you who enjoy some of our programming daily will be able to share generously in the months ahead."
Although Camping has been a public punch line since becoming famous for his rapture warnings, many people claim to believe him. Some supporters have gone so far as to empty their savings accounts to help Family Radio spread its doomsday message only to find that they still had bills to pay the day after the world did not end.
The most tragic event, however, came as a result of Camping's failed May 21, prediction when a group of about 7,000 believers was inspired to head to a mountain top to worship God and await Christ's return after they heard shortwave radio broadcasts of Camping's sermons, according to James Jacob Prasch, executive director of Moriel Ministries, in an earlier CP report.
What unfolded was a bloody massacre as Vietnamese security forces gunned down hundreds of Hmong Christians as the group had gathered near a mountain to await the rapture and return of Jesus.