Harold Camping Faces Own Doomsday, Radio Ministry Likely To Fold Up
By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | May 16, 2013 11:45 AM EST
Harold Camping, who first received his taste of celebrity status when he predicted the world will end on May 21, 2011 and then became infamous for his failed prophecy, is now facing his own doomsday with the nearing demise of his Family Radio ministry.
Reports alleged that former employees revealed the California-based Christian radio network is in a bad financial mess all due to Mr Camping's wild predictions of end of days.
Citing figures from obtained tax records, the Contra Costa Times reported the ministry has not only laid off veteran staffers but likewise had sold its three largest radio stations. Net assets, from a figure of $135 million in 2007, had dropped to $29.2 million in 2011.
Essentially, any person in his right frame of mind would shy away from nutcracker cases, as evidenced from the amount of donations the radio network received before and after the failed doomsday predictions. From a whopping $1.5 million, cash on hand, generated mostly from donations, dropped a thundering 70 per cent to $282,880 in 2011.
Records further showed that in 2012, Mr Camping's group took on a $30 million bridge loan to keep itself alive while waiting money from the sale of the stations.
As expected, Tom Evans, a Family Radio board member, denied Camping's Family Radio ministry no longer has money.
"Sufficient funds were in the bank and, thankfully, we didn't spend everything," he said, referring to the May 2011 prediction. "But it did force us to make quick changes."
In the lead up to the May 2011 doomsday event, Camping's group was able to raise $100 million to fund 5,000 billboards and other forms of End of the World propaganda which they scattered all over the country. The billboards bore the message "He is Coming Back Soon."
Some of Mr Camping's followers even quit their jobs or worse withdrew all their money to help pay for the billboards. Some even organised caravans, travelling around the country to spread the word. A Web site called wecanknow.com was also created. T-shirts, bumper stickers and postcards were also manufactured.
But Matt Tuter, an employee who lost his job with the ministry in 2012, believed Camping and his 55-year-old radio network is nearing its own doomsday.
"You eliminate those three (FM stations) and, ultimately, the rest of it dies. I believe they are killing it off," he said.
Founded more than a half-century ago, Family Radio, at one point, boasted more than 100 FM broadcast relay stations, 66 full-service radio stations and a handful of television stations across the country.
Based on a special numerical system that 91-year old Mr Camping said was still based on the bible, which indicated the occurrence of certain great religious events, such as the Great Flood, the Crucifixion and the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, he predicted the world will end on September 6, 1994, May 21, 2011, and finally Oct. 21, 2011.
As is now global historical fact, all three predictions bombed.
Mr Camping's group issued an apology on the Family Radio Web site in March 2012, following his final unsuccessful prediction, which read "We have learned the very painful lesson that all of creation is in God's hands and He will end time in His time, not ours!"
"We humbly recognize that God may not tell His people the date when Christ will return, any more than He tells anyone the date they will die physically," the statement added.
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