According to Christian preacher Harold Camping, God has officially closed the door to heaven. The world will end Friday, October 21, 2011, and everyone who does not belong to God’s sheepfold will not be saved.
Since atheists belong to a different flock, they plan to celebrate their “heathen ways” at apocalypse after-parties on Oct. 22.
According to the memo Camping released, God told the 89-year-old preacher: “Look! Don’t you know that it is now Judgment Day! That the day of salvation has come and gone! That I am no longer saving people!”
Camping believes, come Saturday morning, the world will end quietly. Atheists beg to differ. To them, the party has just begun.
Seattle Atheists plan to hold a “Left-Behind” party, poking fun at Christians who believe Camping’s proclamation. They plan to watch the Christian movie, “Left Behind,” starring Christian Kirk Cameron, which tells the stories of people stuck on earth after the Rapture.
“Talking over the movie is highly encouraged,” states the Seattle Atheists Web site. “Let’s do this Mystery Science Theater style. In fact if you’ve seen it before, feel free to prepare yourself with in-depth, incisive commentary on the marked changes in Kirk Cameron’s hair since ‘Growing Pains.’ We’ll have popcorn and soda and all manner of terrible things to match this terrible movie. Bring your own bananas.”
To “help bring people out of the rubble and rebuild their lives,” Seattle Atheists is currently collecting donations at the Web site “Rapture Relief.” If the world does not end, the funds will go to Camp Quest NorthWest, a science camp for children.
Many individuals, both believers and non-believers alike, have taken to Twitter to mock the upcoming apocalypse.
“I’m glad all my friends (and most of my followers) are sinners & heathens. We’ll have a helluva party once the #rapture happens,” tweeted Brian Griess.
This is Camping’s fourth claim that the world will end. Is the fourth time the charm? Since it’s already Saturday in some parts of the world, many are saying he missed the mark again.
Perhaps, though, God works in Camping’s time zone. Since it’s only Friday afternoon in California, where Camping is based, there’s still a few hours left before his predicted end. That’s more than enough time to hold a good party.