Entries in World End (1)


Apocalypse Now?: Is 'Rapture 2011' Really the End of the World?

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Some people believe that May 21, 2011 marks the end of the world, or at least the beginning of the end. And while there are some who dispute this prediction, there are those who are convinced that beginning Saturday, more than 200 million people will be swept up to heaven in the Rapture while the rest of humanity will suffer five months of unspeakable misery before the ultimate end of the world in October.

"I am utterly absolutely, absolutely convinced it's going to happen," said Harold Camping, the 89-year-old evangelist and president of Family Radio whose biblical calculations have ignited Rapture fever across America and the world.

Camping pinpointed May 21, at about 5:59 p.m. ET, as the exact time when those chosen by God will ascend to heaven while cataclysmic earthquakes begin to rock earth, and he spent big bucks on 5,000 billboards, posters, fliers and digital bus displays across the country.

Inevitably, many have mocked Camping's prognostications, but the recent series of devastating natural disasters -- the Japan earthquake, recent tornadoes and floods in America - is evidence enough for some people to prepare for the worst.
Robert Fitzpatrick, a 60-year-old retiree from New York, spent his $140,000 life savings to have 3,000 posters put up in New York City's subway and bus system, warning of this impending End of Days.

"Judgment day will begin very shortly before midnight Jerusalem standard time. I think it's going to be instantaneous. Everything will be destroyed and God is going to create a new heaven and a new earth," he said.
Leaders among mainstream Christian denominations have largely condemned date-setting, citing Bible verses that say no man can know the time of the Rapture.
"The people following his predictions are apocalyptic enthusiasts already looking for signs of the end times,” said Stephen O'Leary, an expert in religious communication at University of Southern California. “They want to reinforce their idea that these are the last days.

Camping himself has predicted the End of Days before: Sept. 6, 1994.

Camping had been "thrown off a correct calculation because of some verses in Matthew 24," a Family Radio spokesman told ABC News.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio