In news that has surprised no one, the Rapture didn't occur on Saturday. Well, this non-event did surprise Harold Camping, who emerged briefly to tell a reporter that he was "flabbergasted" his prophecy was incorrect. From Yahoo news:
"It has been a really tough weekend," Camping said Sunday, after emerging from his Alameda, California home for the first time to talk to a reporter from the San Francisco Chronicle. "I'm looking for answers ... But now I have nothing else to say," he said, adding that he would make a full statement today.
Camping's PR aide, Tom Evans, told the L.A. Times that the group is "disappointed" that 200 million true believers weren't lifted up to heaven on Saturday while everyone else suffered and eventually died as a series of earthquakes and famine destroyed the Earth. "You can imagine we're pretty disappointed, but the word of God is still true," Evans said. "We obviously went too far, and that's something we need to learn from." The group posted 2,000 billboards around the country warning of the rapture, while Camping--an uncertified fundamentalist minister--spread the word on his radio show.
Camping's Family Radio, which airs on 66 U.S. stations, has apparently rebranded itself quickly. Business Insider notes that the station's website has scrubbed all mentions of the Judgment Day. The site previously featured a countdown clock to the May 21 rapture on its homepage."
You can read the whole story here. That website might be scrubbed of all the doomsday date setting, but this #RaptureFail will remain in the hearts and minds of many for quite some time. And quite honestly, that bothers me.
True, I poked fun at Camping a bit here on FAR and even more so in real life, even in a meeting at work last week. But over the weekend, I sat and thought about how so many are laughing not at the date setting, but at the teachings that Christ will return again one day. Many have used this Apocalypse Not as a platform to ridicule Christians and Christianity as a whole. And that's been the most hurtful part of this entire story.
On Saturday, about three hours before the supposed End, I was rebaptized. I'm going to write about this in a separate post, but I wanted to mention it now. I spent the morning like I do many weekends, a trip to Starbucks for a frap I have no business consuming because it has a quadrillion calories, then on to my mom's for a visit. K was busy at a Lupus Charity Walk (Yay! Proud of you, Baby!). At three, we headed to our Anglican church, and with just our pastor, my sponsor Marta and us two, I was re-welcomed into God's family.
It's strange that on a day when thousands were preparing for the End, I was getting a chance at a New Beginning. What did you do this weekend? Comments welcomed!
The Newark Star-Ledger I picked up on Saturday.