Thursday, March 16, 2006

Girl in Rogers Park - Queen Anne Hill

This photo was taken in the spring of 2005. The girl was a student at SPU where I did my undergraduate work in the late 60s. This shot reminds me of something by Monet or Renoir or Matisse, anyway that was what I was trying for a girl in a park on a sunny sunday afternoon.

I have a story to tell about Rogers Park.

It was sunny day during spring quarter 1969 at Seattle Pacific College and I was walking in Rogers Park on Queen Anne Hill a few blocks from the ship canal when I struck up a conversation with a young man who's hair was a little longer than mine. He started talking about Jesus and saying all sorts of things I had heard from other folks who looked and acted just like him. They were called "Jesus Freaks" back then. Anyway, he invited me up to his "house" on Queen Anne hill to meet some of his "family". I followed him up the hill to a large house in an old neighborhood. Nothing much happened during my 45 minute visit with the Love Family. A few people were sitting on the carpet in the living room meditating. I was offered a cup of market spice tea. There wasn't a lot of talking and when someone did talk they seemed to always be speaking in parables and quoting scripture. I left after a while and felt a sense of relief to be back out in the sunshine. There was something a little too "heavy" about the Love Family for my tastes. They invited me to come back again. I didn't.

From the WWW:
"The Love Family was a U.S. communal religious movement led by Love Israel. Formally called the Church of Jesus Christ at Armageddon, the Love Family began in 1968 when the community began living collectively in a community on Queen Anne Hill."


revdrron said...

I love your Rogers Park on Queen Anne Hill picture and story. Specifically, you story reminds me of a similar incident during the summer of 1971. I was hanging out at the pier in Santa Barbara, CA when several Children of God folks kneeled in the sand to pray the sinner’s prayer with me. Afterward they invited me to move in with them but God preserved me.

enjoy, ron

C. Stirling Bartholomew said...

Greetings Ron,

I had some friends who live in "communities" but they were NOT formed around a leader who claimed to have some sort of esoteric message like "The Church of Jesus Christ at Armageddon" lead by Love Israel. From '70-75 I would say that the majority of my friends and colleagues were living in houses that would qualify as "communities" of some sort. I never much cared for it. I worked and lived in a church sponsored residential treatment center for drug addicts for two years and my colleagues were either living at the center or living in some sort of a study center sponsored by the church. Later on a subset of these folks formed an independent community which moved up on Beacon Hill in Seattle into a huge house. These people were not weird at all. They were professionals, with 9-5 jobs.

Thanks for your comments,