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Pope calls on faithful to ignore doomsday warnings for 21 December

Ding ding ding! It’s round one of Pope Benedict XVI versus the Mayan prophets of doom.

Image: JeremyWhat via Shutterstock

POPE BENEDICT XVI has called on Christians not to heed doomsday warnings that the world will end on 21 December.

During his weekly Angelus address from the window of his Vatican apartments on Saint Peter’s Square today, Benedict spoke of extracts from the bible which speak of “the sun and moon going out, the stars falling from the sky.”

Several films and documentaries have promoted the idea that the ancient Mayan calendar predicts that doomsday is next month, on 21 December, 2012.

But Benedict said that Jesus “does not describe the end of the world, and when he uses apocalyptic images, he is not acting the prophet.

“On the contrary, he wants to stop his disciples of every epoch from being curious over dates, forecasts, and wants to give them the key to… the right road to walk today and tomorrow to enter into the eternal life,” he added.

As many as 90,000 people are expected to attend a massive event in Guatemala City on December 21, just in case the world actually does end, while tour groups are promoting doomsday-themed getaways.

- © AFP, 2012

Explainer: Why the world isn’t going to end – an astronomer reveals all >

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