What Camping did have going for him, though, was persistence. He never backed down, never balked, and even now, he's still holding steady. He presented his case with passion, like he believes what he's selling. (If it's an act, it's a damn good one.)
But that steadfast belief (or appearance of it) caused Camping to break one big ol' cardinal rule. He made a promise he couldn't keep. Of course, it wasn't up to him to bring the Rapture, but he promised it would happen. He based this whole thing on his research into guarantees that supposedly appear in the Bible about the time and date of Christ's return to Earth. Still, Camping's failure to deliver in 1994 didn't seem to hurt his impact this time around. It remains to be seen how his devotees will react as we draw closer to Oct. 21. Of course, fundraisers can't risk making promises they can't keep. But if you take the religion out of it … do you think this whole thing has anything to teach fundraisers about getting out their messages and engaging supporters? Send me an e-mail or use the comment section. I can't wait to hear your thoughts on the matter.