Doomsday prophet and Family Radio President Harold Camping has gone missing ever since it became clear that his May 21, 2011 End of the World prediction is not going to come true. However, a bigger question now looms about the unaccounted finances of the non-profit Christian radio network.
Family Radio, which owns 66 stations worldwide, including in the U.S., depends primarily on donations for its operations. Between 2005 and 2009, it has received $80 million in contributions. The IRS filings reveal that in 2009 alone, Family Radio managed to bring $18 million in contributions, and the total assets for that year was $72 million.
Interestingly in 2007, according to the financial statements in possession with MinistryWatch.com which grades Christian organizations on financial transparency, Family Radio’s total asset was $152 million, including contributions which totaled nearly $16 million.
Family Radio’s asset value has diminished by $80 million in two years. Where has this money gone?
According to Family Radio’s IRS filings, it has paid its 350-employees a collective $8.3 million, or roughly $23,000 per employee.
Family Radio is also believed to have spent $5-10 million towards promoting Camping’s Doomsday prediction campaign.
Camping says he is a voluntary employee at Family Radio and has never taken home any salary.
However, Family Radio is under the IRS scanner as they are required to submit their financial statements in many of their states where they solicit donations. In one such state Minnesota, they have requested a filing extension from July 15 deadline to November 15. This is strange because if Harold Camping was certain that the world is going to end on May 21, 2011, why would Family Radio request the extension till November 15?
Not surprisingly, MinistryWatch.com has given Family Radio a transparency grade of “C”.
Christian leaders have asked Camping to repent publicly.
“Harold Camping, pls update www.family.radio.com w/your repentance statement & instructions to your now-broke followers,” wrote Ed Stetzer on his tweeter, who is the president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s LifeWay Research.