Thursday, 2 December 2010

US billboards claim Jesus will return May 21, 2011

... which, even by the standards of Christian predictions of the Second Coming, is kinda specific.

Forty billboards have sprung up around nine cities in the US, claiming that May 21, 2011 will be the date of the Rapture.

Fans of Family Radio, a nationwide Christian radio network, paid for the billboards after the network's founder, Harold Camping, predicted the date for the Rapture.

In Camping's latest publication, We are Almost There!, he states that certain Biblical passages point unquestionably to May 21, 2011 as the date of "Rapture", and October 21, 2011 as the end of the world. This is despite already getting it wrong - in his book 1994? he claimed there was a very high likelihood that the world would end in September 1994, although he did admit he "could be wrong".

Undeterred, 29-year-old Allison Warden orchestrated the billboard campaign in Nashville, Tennessee. Allison is a volunteer with, a website set up by followers of Family Radio.

Although the exact nature of the Rapture is contested, in its most popular current form it involves Christ returning from Heaven to earth while saved individuals - both dead and alive - will rise up in the air and join him in the sky. A particular favourite of the evangelists in America, it's also the basis of Tim LeHaye's internationally best-selling 'Left Behind' series of novels.

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