*The Seattle PI reports that this time, Harold Camping sounds like a man who has suffered the whisper of self-doubt.
The Oakland minister’s latest prediction of the end of the world – which he’s set for Friday – is couched among words like “probably” and “maybe,” a far cry from the carved-in-stone certitude he projected onto his infamous May 21 forecast.
“I do believe we’re getting very near the very end,” Camping, 90, said during a podcast recorded earlier this month and posted on his Family Radio website. “Oct. 21, that’s coming very shortly, that looks like it will be, at this point, it will be the final end of everything.”
After his last apocalyptic prediction failed to materialize, Camping said he was “flabbergasted” and was reconsidering his calculations.
“We’ve learned that there’s a lot of things we didn’t have quite right,” he acknowledged during the podcast.
A June 9 stroke kept Camping hospitalized until early September, but he’s since returned to the airwaves. He now characterizes May 21 as a “tremendous event” that unleashed a spiritual judgment day, just not the material one that he expected.
Tom Evans, a longtime Family Radio employee who believed he would ascend to heaven May 21, declined to comment on Camping’s latest end-of-times prediction.
Evans also serves as a liaison to the media on Camping’s behalf and said the minister was not available for interviews.
“We said all we were going to say after May 21,” Evans said. “There’s nothing more or new to say now.”
On recently recorded podcasts, Camping hedged his Oct. 21 prediction – “Probably there will be no pain suffered by anyone because of their rebellion against God” – but he maintained that, ultimately, the end is nigh.
“I really am beginning to think as I’ve restudied these matters that there’s going to be no big display of any kind,” Camping said. “The end is going to come very, very quietly.”