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Doomsday predictions draw debunkers, parties in Oklahoma

Experts discuss Dec. 21 end of Mayan “long calendar.”
by Carla Hinton Modified: December 19, 2012 at 8:02 pm •  Published: December 20, 2012
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— An Edmond woman is planning what could be the birthday party of a lifetime.

Felicite Moorman will turn 39 Friday — a day that might be her last, according to various predictions based on the ancient Mayan calendar.

Moorman said she's not worried, though.

In fact, she's planning to have a great time at a big bash her friends are throwing for her called “The End of the World (And Felicite's Best Birthday Party Ever!)”

“Obviously, none of us put any weight in the prophecy, but it's an excellent excuse for a party,” she said, and laughed.

For the past several years, doomsday predictions have focused on Dec. 21, 2012 — the day the ancient Mayans' Long Count calendar ends. Because the Mayans were known for their timekeeping, some people have said they were foretelling the end of the world.

Some think the Mayans might have been privy to knowledge about impending astronomical disasters that would coincide with 2012, ranging from storms on the surface of the sun that could knock out power grids to a galactic alignment that could trigger a reversal in Earth's magnetic field.

Websites, social media, cable TV shows and science fiction movies such as “2012” have helped fuel the hoopla about the end-times prophecy. Astronomers and biblical prophecy experts, even NASA, have tried to debunk the predictions.

The Los Angeles Times reported that the space agency has been flooded with calls and emails from people asking about the purported end of the world.

Dwayne Brown, an agency spokesman, told the Times NASA typically receives about 90 calls or emails per week.

In recent weeks, he said, 200 to 300 people per day have been asking about the end of the world.

Two Oklahoma observers said the Mayan prophecy has no merit.

The Rev. Mark Hitchcock, a biblical prophecy expert and author of the books “2012: The Bible and the End of the Word” and “The End: A Complete Overview of Biblical Prophecy and the End of Days” said the Mayans knew a lot about time and astronomy but they didn't know the future.

“Only God knows the future,” said Hitchcock, senior pastor of Faith Bible Church in Edmond.

Hitchcock said people ask him questions because he did extensive research on the Mayan calendar for his book “2012.” On Friday, he said, the day the Mayan cyclic calendar ends, the sun and the Earth will be directly aligned with the center of the equator of the galaxy for the first time in 26,000 years.

“So, the center of our galaxy and the sun and the Earth will be lined up, which means on that day, supposedly, the energy that comes from the center of our galaxy will be interrupted to the Earth because the sun will be in the way.” He said people have predicted that natural disasters will result.

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by Carla Hinton
Religion Editor
Carla Hinton, an Oklahoma City native, joined The Oklahoman in 1986 as a National Society of Newspaper Editors minority intern. She began reporting full-time for The Oklahoman two years later and has served as a beat writer covering a wide...
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