The Resurrection Will Not Be Televised

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GARLAND, Texas: It wasn't in TV Guide, but God was supposed to show up on Channel 18 at 12:01 a.m. this morning. Taiwanese teacher Chen Heng-ming and his 140 followers were tuned in and waiting as if their lives depended on it. With good reason: Chen had told them the Almighty would announce His plans to transport them away from the Earth in flying saucers ahead of next year's prophesized nuclear apocalypse. But when Channel 18's religious programming offered nothing but apologies and prayers for the group, a sober Chen emerged to tell the waiting press: "I'd rather you didn't believe what I say anymore."

"Are you a false prophet?" asked a TV reporter. "You can take what we have preached as nonsense," said Chen. He added he would "take responsibility" for the financial losses of his followers, who gave up their jobs and bought more than two dozen homes at the Supreme Being's landing site. Having said that, Chen refused to rule out completely that God would appear in human form at 3153 Ridgedale Drive next week as planned.