Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

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December 18, 2012

Latest end times fad on the horizon

— If you don’t get your copy of the Hendricks County Flyer Saturday morning, it might mean the Mayans were right. The latest, greatest end times craze will hit its crescendo Dec. 21 when the much talked about Mayan Long Count Calendar comes to an assumed end, which some believe will bring an end of the world.

End times discussions and supposed events span generations as far back as humanity can track, but few have gained the national pulse that has even the United States government and NASA releasing statements assuring Americans that the end of the world is not upon us.

Mark Wingler, pastor at the Journey Church in Brownsburg, says waiting for the end of the world is somewhat of a fruitless endeavor since we don’t really know when it will happen. Still, he said his congregation has shown interest.

“Obviously we know what the Bible says, that nobody knows the day or the hour, so from that standpoint, it’s hard to believe the Mayans from many, many years ago would have any insight into it because time is an invention of man,” he said.

Wingler said part of the fascination comes from the difficulty people have with facing their own mortality.

“I do think that’s part of it,” he said. “I remember there was a pamphlet put out, 88 reasons the world was going to end in 1988. Then you had (Harold Camping) come out and said the world was going to end twice. Psycologically, people want to be in control, they want to have a plan. I think the end of the world is more comforting because they feel like they can plan that there’s going to be an end of it.”

David Craig, a religious studies professor at IUPUI, also said that while end times predictions have been going on nearly forever, the Mayan Calendar theory appeals to a wider audience.

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