Time to sync calenders and save the date 'cos if ya aint one of the saved you are in for a bit of a bumpy ride. You got it, once again our cousins in the USA have gone and got their crazy on.
Enter stage left radio personality and preacher - Mr Harold Camping. Mr Camping from Oakland, California, is confident in his message that the second coming of the Lord will happen at about 6.00 pm on the 21st of May 2011, at this time he reckons about 2% of the global population will be, without any further ado "raptured" into Heaven, while the rest of us get a one way ticket to "The Other Place".
I think it's important at this point to point out that we've been here before with Mr Camping, back in September 1994, hundreds of his listeners gathered at an auditorium in Alameda looking forward to Christ's return. It seems that Mr Camping has had time to reflect on why the big J didn't put in an appearance at that time which was mainly down to his skim reading of the Good Book, that's all changed now and only last week he said "At that time there was a lot of the Bible I had not really researched very carefully," "but now, we've had the chance to do just an enormous amount of additional study and God has given us outstanding proofs that it really is going to happen."
In normal circumstances it would be easy to ignore Mr Camping and assign him to the' crazy old man' label but Mr Camping's pulpit isn't in some USA backwater. Back in 1950 Camping founded the Family Radio Network which is entirely funded by it's listeners with an asset total of $122 million, 66 radio stations in the USA and radio stations as far afield as Russia, South Africa and Turkey producing daily shows recorded in 48 languages.
The greatest concern is the pernicious nature of his preaching such as his comments on recent events such as the earthquake in Japan, New Zealand and Haiti all these are harbingers of doom he says as are the changing social values "All the stealing, and the lying, and the wickedness and the sexual perversion that is going on in society is telling us something," he says. "So too is the gay pride movement. It was sent by God as a sign of the end."
Where the crazy steps up a gear is that there are pockets of folk across the USA that have handed in their notice to their employers and are closing up shop in preparation - ahhh America, you never let us down.