Doomsday campers predict Earth will witness apocalypse on May 21

Last Updated: Tue, Mar 08, 2011 05:30 hrs

A group of 10 Christians from Oakland who call themselves Family Radio are travelling around the country preaching that the apocalypse is slated to happen on May 21 this year.

On that date a massive earthquake will shake the world apart, littering the ground with "many dead bodies," according to the not-so happy campers.

They say that those who believe in Jesus will go to heaven and the rest will be left to endure 153 days of "death and horror" before the world ends on October 21.

'Project Caravan', as it has become known, is made up of members of the Family Radio network all of who have given up jobs, families and all their possessions to join this final mission.

"I know it's absolutely true, because the Bible is always absolutely true. If I were not faithful that would mean that I'm a hypocrite," the Daily Mail quoted the group's leader, 89-year-old Harold Camping as saying to CNN.

Despite his conviction, Camping has predicted the world would end before - on September 4 1994. That, he says, was a mistake, a misreading of the biblical codes used to decipher the exact date of the 'rapture'.

According to them, Noah's great flood occurred in the year 4990 B.C., 'exactly' 7000 years ago. Taking a passage from 2 Peter 3:8, in which it is said a day for God is like a thousand human years, the church reasoned that seven 'days' equals 7000 human years from the time of the flood, making 2011 the year of the apocalypse.

In its second 'proof' the exact date is revealed by working forward from the exact date of the crucifixion - April 1, 33 AD. According to their reasoning, there are exactly 722,500 days from April 1, 33 A.D. until May 21, 2011 - the alleged day of judgement. This number can be represented as follows: 5 x 10 x 17 x 5 x 10 x 17 = 722,500.

The church then argues that numbers in the bible have special meanings, with the number 5 signifying atonement or redemption, the number 10 signifying 'completeness' and the number 17 equalling heaven.

'Ambassador' Sheila Jonas, another of the Family Radio faithful, said, "I'm in it until the end. This is so serious, I can't believe I'm here."

And for anyone harbouring doubts over the accuracy of the prediction, the group has a cast iron answer - "the Bible guarantees it." (ANI)