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"For we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not of ourselves."

SPIRITUAL LIFE
BURSTING FORTH

Part 20 in the series by David Hoyt

Jesus People Revolution Part 20

Jim PalosaAri & Sue Cowper Intersect with Canadian Evangelist Russ Griggs & American Linda Meissner

On the outskirts of Seattle Washington, in a rural town called Cathhart, Russ Griggs was preaching the gospel, conducting evangelistic tent meetings.

Traveling and low on funds Jim Palosaari and Sue Cowper saw signs for free camping and followed them. On arrival they found the campsite was on land where a small tent revival meeting was being held.  Camping nearby and invitations led to attending.  Sue recalls, “As the only non-Christians, Russ was primarily preaching to us. In spite of intellectual battles – we were convinced by the Holy Spirit that Jesus Christ was God’s Son and put our faith in Him.”  As the Scriptures teach, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord, will be saved (Acts 2:21).” 

The miracle was genuine and spiritual life was unleashed. When the meetings were over Russ and wife Rosie encouraged Jim and Sue to meet locals from the Jesus People Army in Seattle, led by friend, Linda Meissner.   This introduction was successful, as Sue went to live in ‘The House of Esther’ a women’s discipleship house in the ministry, and Jim hooked up with a guy’s house. As Jim and Sue became more committed in their faith and to each other, Russ was asked to officiate their wedding.  With God’s prompting, Jim and Sue made a move to Milwaukee Wisconsin, not far from where Jim was raised in Ocomonowoc.

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Milwaukee Jesus People Beginnings 
War Memorial Outreach  

Inspired by what Jim and Sue had seen on the west coast they stayed in touch with Linda Meissner – inviting her to speak at the ‘War Memorial Stadium’ in Milwaukee.  In preparation, Jim pulled together a new band called ‘The Sheep’. This was the beginning of Jim and Sue gathering a new ministry team around them.

Jim and Sue knew the importance of reaching outward, including people, giving individuals a sense of belonging along with the imperative of preaching the gospel and teaching all to put their faith into action. Following Jesus was not for the faint-hearted.  There would be a cost.  Most who became Christians in the Jesus People days experienced God’s power, became witnesses to Jesus Christ’s resurrection and sensed the amazing power of God’s presence and grace (Acts 4:33).  Mike Damrow was one of the earliest to join up and he remembers these days well.    

Mike Damrow photo Mike Damrow – Songwriter
Early Sheep Band Member Writes:

“We formed a band with two weeks to prepare for the War Memorial outreach gig. We learned six songs. One of the girls wanted to name the band ‘Inner Light’ but the name ‘The Sheep’ prevailed when I shared a verse from Romans 8:36 (considered as sheep to be slaughtered). Our band was comprised of Rich Hass, Bonnie Spencer, Larry Barker (Mole), Dave Jawkowski (Bobo) and I.  Bonnie was folksy, but we guys were more rock and rowdy.  

The War Memorial Meetings were dynamic.  The meetings were packed. Media coverage added interest.  Lots of people came to Christ. Jim Palosarri and Linda Meissner worked together on this outreach with Linda taking the speaking lead. We went from 10 committed disciples to 30 overnight.  Among those saved, were a bunch of students from Layton School of Art.

I was with Jim when we looked at a building on Brady St. as a possibility for a ministry coffee house.  It had been a paint and hardware store and the rent was $325 a month – which seemed like a lot in 1971, and they wanted 3 months’ rent in advance! When all the bills were paid from the War Memorial outreach we had $ 985. After paying the rent for the coffeehouse we had $10. left over.

Immediately we went to work on converting the rental property. It was located in the heart of the Milwaukee’s counterpart to the Haight / Ashbury.  We named the coffeehouse, ‘Jesus Christ Power House’.  New members from the art school painted murals from the life of Christ on the windows. Sue Palosaari utilized her writing skills, inviting these students to help her put together a Jesus People newspaper, we named ‘Street Level’.  Both the coffeehouse and the newspaper gave us visibility and opportunity. 

The Jesus People House was another stretch of faith. I’d moved into the house on Frederick St. the first day we rented it in February of that year.  The place was in shambles with loose plaster, no heat, and was in need of massive work.  That first day Jim Palosaari had news people from channel 11 in there filming that this was a new Jesus People house.  I think they were unimpressed by this dilapidated property. 

I met my wife to be, Mary, in the summer of 1971 in Milwaukee. She lived next door to our Jesus People Houses.  With our coffeehouse ‘Jesus Christ Power House’ transformed into a functioning outreach location and the newspaper in circulation – the ministry was picking up steam, rapidly expanding as God’s Son Jesus Christ was lifted up.

Jim had a strong sense of vision and utilized and affirmed ministry team talents – putting people to work!   When it came to preaching and the whole of the ministry – the cross and the blood of Christ was at the core.  At the same time Jim was sensitive to the pulse of the culture.  With a theater background he knew the importance of being heard clearly – projection and sound.  Seeing gifts in others and nurturing these was a strong suit for Jim.  Jim was interested in hearing about you, what you thought, what got your blood pumping, what inspired you.  This was a gift.  I was inspired to use my talents.”

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Milwaukee Ministry Teams Branch-Out
Sue Palosaari Cowper Writes:

Sue Palosarri Cowper

Offer to Evangelize in Europe

“In the spring of '72, we were offered an opportunity to fly to Europe, an invitation from the Full Gospel Businessmen initiated by Milwaukee supporter, Jay Dalton, who'd encouraged his association to include us on one of their 2-week evangelistic "airlifts" to Denmark and Sweden. Jim was then developing a reputation throughout the upper midwest, his preaching style refreshingly compelling with its dash of humor to sideswipe the undecided. Always one for the open road and new horizons, Jim didn't hesitate in accepting the offer. The deal struck, we'd be flying out in June.

How The Milwaukee Ministry Teams were Grouped and Sent Out

At the time of this offer to go into Europe to evangelize, the Milwaukee ministry was headed towards 300-plus full-time disciples. Our base was a well-mopped hospital building – but rapidly running out of accommodation and infrastructure capabilities. Our enthusiasm for developing a discipleship training program had begun to wane. Delightful, inspired, inexhaustible, our disciples were also an unwieldy bunch, for who can govern the heart of a Jesus freak?

Only a few years older, Jim and I were sometimes overwhelmed, always tired, often making crucial decisions in the midst of some crises. This was not unusual in the Jesus movement, and a part of the reason it was eventually felled, but at this time we were unaware of the impossible parameters of our endeavor.

A busload now known as JPUSA had earlier traveled south with John and Dawn Herrin and their children, including an emerging band then called Charity (later to become Rez Band) put together by Glenn Kaiser. Leaving town with great hurrahs, as we did each group we sent out, they returned to Milwaukee with leadership issues to air, and an intent to "form their own ministry" elsewhere. An uncomfortable few days of reconciliation meetings in closed rooms later, Jim got the bright idea of having a ceremony to send them out thus bypassing all the drama. This idea grew of its own momentum, and soon we were planning a gala week of dispersal, including several marriages.

Reconciled and somewhat mollified, John officiated the marriage of daughter Wendi to Glenn Kaiser and we waved our farewells.

Selecting only thirty of a well-honed group, many who'd been together over a year, was impossible. Some we loved must remain behind – but it would only be a couple of weeks. We prayed, revised, worried over that list. It was posted, and then reposted again. We could feel the coming threat of wrenching apart, the signs of battle fatigue, the need for regeneration, dispersal on the horizon. Who would we take to Europe?

Well, of course, that would include the band, The Sheep. Their music ministry had become the backbone of the Milwaukee group – their folk/rock sound and songwriting by Michael Damrow, (who would marry singer Mary that spring), harmony by Rich Haas and "Little Reed" Midelsteadt, "Mole" Larry Barker strumming base. Lynn married lead guitarist Greg Nancarrow during the last week of festivities. Two were added for the short trip, drummer Jim Winn and Mark Schwabe.  

Henry Huang, Jim's "right hand man," managed everything, with Dennis Knight as his helper. My friends on the paper, Jenny Hanson, who'd married Rich Haas, writer Arlene Czekalski, and Don Schendel, my co-editor came along. Others included secretary, Margie Kazmerik, Kathy MacIntyre, Carol Durkin (now Trott), Linda Feltzer, and who could resist saying yes to Lynn Malmberg, who came along as "the babysitter"--an irony not lost over the years as we've seen her lifelong ministry to children.

We prayed together and it felt right. A few would leave us later that summer -- Michele Desvignes to La Bri, Paul Gardner to Lebonon, Dorrie M and Nancy Ulman to Milwaukee; those remaining would became the core during the subsequent months of traveling, adding many, including Siv and Irene, Wilhelm and Boise in Sweden, Owen in Finland. Sandie in Lautzenhousen, Matt Spransy in England and many more. We'd said no to Mike Drahfall, but that didn't deter him. He paid his own way over and joined us on a street march in Helsinki, Finland. Good thing, because Mike would later procure the vehicles to transport us, even when we were out of money.

From that original Milwaukee group, sixty were selected to join Bill and Sara Lowrey's tent ministry in Davenport, Iowa. Bill, an ol' time fundamentalist preacher, saw the theatrical potential of rolling into town with hundreds of Jesus freaks, jumping out of vehicles and onto the streets with newspapers and invitations to the night's preaching in the big tent. We'd worked with him earlier; it seemed a plausible decision. Bill's tent and trailer ministry, much like JPUSA, who'd eventually settle in Chicago, would become the start-up nucleus for an ever-enlarging vision that would one day expand to Europe.

Quite a few stayed behind in Milwaukee with Frank Bass, a fellow we'd met during the month of Duluth revivals. His oversight would eventually cause the disintegration of that remnant, later blamed on Jim and I in castigating news articles, forwarded to those of us stranded in Germany. In retrospect, Bass had little experience; had been given no mandate but to hold down the fort, and it must have felt as though he'd been abandoned. By then we were far away, in Lautzenhauzen, Germany, without funds to support ourselves, let alone send help back to the USA, while dependent on a nearby air force base of kindly soldiers who daily brought us food. 

30 Member Milwaukee Jesus People Team into Europe

My own anticipation was influenced by a lifetime of reading and obsession with foreign shores, and a previous rucksack summer hitchhiking through Europe. That I'd now be traveling with 30 other young Christians and an infant of six months did not deter me, as I envisioned myself able to overcome any hindrance. This romantic and inaccurate self-image would be replaced a few weeks out when diapers needed laundering by hand and foreign church floors were no longer so appealing. But that came later. Photographs from those first 2 weeks show me in freshly ironed new clothes next to a van, laughing, in a field of flowers—probably relief after being cooped up for hours of driving at top speeds from one venue to the next through dense Swedish forests.

When the FGBA first proposed buying seats for 30 Jesus freaks, ostensibly for a 2 week run of testimonies (personal stories), music by The Sheep, and Jim preaching to capacity crowds, they could not have foreseen our remarkable agility as Jesus freaks to use any moment to our advantage. They'd expected us to take our place dutifully on stage alongside the boy who could remove his false eyeball to prove he could still "see" by God's miraculous power. Our 11th hour decision to "miss the plane and keep on going in Europe" would come as an afterthought just as we were about to return to the airport two weeks later.

Sweden, Finland, Germany and Holland

Milwaukee JP Finland 1972

In Sweden as guests of the Full Gospel Businessmen’s Association we conducted preaching and impromptu music concerts.  The next stop was Finland, Jim’s country of ancestry.  Finland was an important mission stop for the Jesus People team. Jim preached the gospel at several noted locations including Stone Church in Helsinki and The Sheep Christian band produced their first music album.  

The Sheep were evolving in their style, in spite of band member changes. Mike and Mary Damrow returned to the states due to medical needs associated with a baby on the way. Jim Winn and Mark Schwabe returned home for personal reasons.  Others stepped up to the plate, including Lisa Carothers as lead singer. Rehearsals were held in a God-forsaken ex-brothal front room, located in the desolate farm hamlet of Lautzenhausen. Still broke financially and needing to move on, with only faith as our purse, we headed out in duct-taped vans once again. The first tinge of fall was in the air, with me again pregnant, Jed on my lap, and Jenny with a tiny infant – we headed over the border and into Holland, most of us with valid passports.

It was in Holland, on the day we'd only enough money left to buy a bag of pom frits w/mayonase, that Jim received a telegram from Mr. Fampton, “Come immediately.  Money of no object.”   Russell Griggs, now out of the COG and in London, had vetted us to Mr. Frampton.  Our clothes in tatters, hope of civilization restored, Jim, Jed, and I boarded the next plane to GB, where our story took a new turn. Our team followed in vans after some minor mishaps at the border, a story which Owen Brock or Greg Nancarrow could tell better during moments of dark humor.

The songs of the Jesus People were new and old. The old time choruses got a fresh wind of fire on long road trips, or in less than adequate temporary housing.   I could sometimes hear them singing "Sing til the power of the Lord comes down", my floor thumping, till 2 in the morning.” 

THE REAL JESUS  REVOLUTION IN ENGLAND

- Dave Hoyt

By providential circumstance, Russ Griggs was in London to help us with an exposé  press conference with BBC News on the topic of the ‘Children of God’. Russ knew about Jim and Sue’s circumstances in Holland and told Mr. Frampton about their effective ministry in various countries and need to make a move.

Distraught by the mistake of supporting the COG cult, Mr. KP Frampton wanted to counter this error. The whole episode of his misplaced trust in The Children of God – weighed heavily on his heart, mind and soul. Especially since he still had two of his sons, David and Keith, still under COG influence.

Knowing Mr. Frampton’s heart, Russ told him, “This could be the antidote for the bad press and deceptive tactics of the COG.  England needs real Jesus People!”   Mr. Frampton wanted assurances and made USA contacts immediately to verify Russ’ reference and assurances that the Palosaari’s  had absolutely no connection to the Children of God.  When confident this was true – Mr. Frampton moved without haste sending a telegram to Jim Palosaari and began making arrangements to bring the team to England.

Russ’ referral for Jim and Sue who he knew from earlier Jesus People days in the US northwest couldn’t have come at a more perfect timing!  This was a huge answer to prayer on many levels that would spark the fresh fires of the Holy Spirit in England.


  ENGLAND

—A TIME FOR ALL THINGS UNDER HEAVEN

Sue Palosaari Cowper

We were now comfortably settled in a NE London hotel, The Queen's Hotel in the Crystal Palace (a ramshackled place where vagrants could still find shelter in unremodeled portions).  Quickly Mr. Frampton moved to secure a lease on a large spacious home nearby that was on the docket to eventually be torn down. The hotel in the meantime was more than adequate, a welcomed replacement for pub floors in Holland.

I remember the first time Jim and I saw David Hoyt in England in a restaurant, brought along by Mr. Frampton. I sat next to him. He looked like death, shell-shocked– in a cocoon of inner pain.  We knew about the COG and their evils and heard snippets of his dash into the fire with his family. Mr. Frampton told us how they sorted him—like a victim of a Nazi inquisition, bringing his wife to testify against him, ruining her spirit by this act – sealing her alliance with a cloaked cult.  I remember trying to get him to speak that evening and his words were few. 

Now I know, how horribly hurt and ashamed he felt over losing his family and for letting the Children of God come near a thriving southern ministry. Shame can paralyze a soul. I'm glad our Milwaukee Jesus People were all such ordinary caring people that we didn't miss a beat, taking him in and making a place for him to heal with us. We really had no sense of discrimination then. Our love was simple and pure – void of prejudice and a judgmental spirit.  As we were a blessing to him, he too, to us – with the bonds of love running deep – enduring. 

Paul the apostle said it well, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.  For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows” (II Corinthians 1:3-5).

Hoyt and a few of our Milwaukee team were in charge of getting that drafty Edwardian home ready for occupancy—opening a wall in the downstairs to make one large room, patching, painting, getting the water and heat turned on and applying plastic coverings over all the windows to retain heat. We named the home ‘Beulah Hill’ reflecting on Scriptures in Isaiah 62:4-5 that describes a land provided by God – a home of peace in a marriage with a new country, England. On our first night and all that were to follow, we were grateful and content with God’s provision.” 
  

              THE ENGLAND I CAME TO LOVE

– Dave Hoyt

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Observing life in England was fascinating to me as an American. I’d already received the best gift of all via the incredible hospitality of being welcomed as a stranger into the homes and hearts of a number of families (Matthew 25:35-40, Romans 12:13, Titus 1:8).  This gift of acceptance, love and kindness I shall never forget.  In addition to this, my eyes were opened to a culture of warmth, simplicity, dignity, seasoned by a long history reminiscent of all that’s grand and noble, alongside historical flaws not worthy of repeating.  Taking it all in, England was unlike anything I’d known in the USA.  Not quick and rushed, but tidy – to be savored, like a hot cup of tea in the winter.

In the early 1970’s England had a distinct old world feel to it – very much like stepping back in time.  Little things like milk on the doorstep with a froth of cream at the top.  Young children placed in carriages outside in a front garden to nap in the open air.  Green rugby and soccer fields everywhere with kids not deterred to play in the cold, rain or fog. It was customary to visit specialized small shops that sold one thing or another.  Seeing a full pig hanging in the butcher shop caused me to do a double-take more than once. Tea time was a welcomed break and for the most part and undisputable right of every man, woman, and child – as time seemed to stand still from all human toil, for brief periods in the day.  The pubs were a multipurpose place to gather for eating, drinking, darts and the like.  The rich seemed to have old money and the everyday man or woman in employment worked hard to make ends meet.  People walked everywhere – to town for groceries, to bus stops, to catch trains and the underground.  For the most part, the population was fit and healthier for it. 

The transportation infrastructure was deeper than anything I’d ever seen.  At every twist and turn in the road – and there are lots of them, there was a bus stop.  Catching a ‘Boose’(bus) could be exciting when it was already in motion by the time your feet landed on the back platform at the rear of its lower level. “Grab a bar and hang on!”  To this day, I’ll never know how the bus cashiers kept up with all the people coming and going, collecting and servicing not just one, but two levels.  The train system also spread out like a giant web winding its way outward to distant townships and villages.

The homes were substantial, varied, most often with splendid gardens, shrubbery and flowers in season.  The larger city buildings, hotels, museums and the like were hundreds of years old. I thought about the artisans who’d worked without the luxury of modern equipment, or lifts – building mammoth structures of stone to endure. The skyline of downtown London is filled with them. Victoria Station in London amazed me as did the expanse of the underground.

I learned that in order to build a famous cathedral church in York they had to make a ramp some five miles long to access and finish the upper sections.  The quality of construction and architecture canceled any doubts about this country being primitive and backwards.  Instead, I saw first- hand, a county with a long history of greatness and expansion throughout the world. From that which was awe inspiring like Buckingham and Holyrood Palaces to the simple things of everyday life. I treasured non hurried country walks; recalling one to a small village set back from the main road a mile or two.  Blue and billowy clouds filled the sky, vegetable and flower gardens were in abundance, livestock and horses grazed in nearby lush green pastures. The history, the pristine freshness of the countryside, the English people and their hospitality – the whole package created a cultural friendship bond.

I wrote a song set in England entitled ‘Tradin My Life’.  It depicts part of my memories, “Tall hedges along the roadside, passing the centuries gone by. Well, I been down to the country fair – riding high on a ferris wheel – Well I’m at the age, and I want to know, I’m at the age and I’m growing old. So I’m tradin my sorrows for a song in the morning, Yes I’m tradin my life for a place next to you Lord, yes I am.” 

WITNESSING AT THE LONDON KRISHNA TEMPLE

While walking in London during dark personal days, I stumbled on the London ISKON Krishna Consciousness Temple.  For years I’d made it a practice to dialogue with temple devotees in different cities about God and weave in the message of His Son, Jesus Christ explaining the purpose of his life, death and resurrection.    I was always on the look-out for any devotee or guest who might offer a listening ear. Today was no different, except for the sobering reality of my family and friends still lost in a cult.  The Krishna Temple and grounds were buzzing with activity. Ten or so devotees were on the long walkway leading up to the temple (a large Victorian House) talking to guests.  I wasn’t sure if a ‘Kirtan’ (a Hindu worship service) had just concluded, or was about to begin. 

Hindu Temple Inside

I felt melancholy and nostalgic deciding to start up a conversation with a devotee by asking about Wayne who had been my closest friend at the Krishna Temple in San Francisco.  The first devotee referred me to another who knew Wayne.  On hearing I was an old friend of Wayne’s and was genuinely concerned – he opened up to me.  I learned Wayne had visited the temple for a number of months as a guest Sanyasan teacher.  The devotee pulled me aside off the walkway onto a patch of lawn continuing, “He suffered a nervous breakdown while with us.   He stopped eating regularly and began identifying with deities to the point of losing all contact with reality.  When he left here he was unable to speak and I don’t know where he is now.”

This was sad news.  Knowing only Wayne’s first English name was frustrating with no way to follow up. All I could do was pray.  Stunned by this news, I succinctly shared my testimony of receiving Jesus Christ at the San Francisco ISCON Temple and when the devotee said he had to go – I ambled off the grounds with a sad heart praying for Wayne.   

On another visit to the London Krishna ISKON Temple, I met a seeker named Caroline Greene. Krishna devotees were not happy to hear me witnessing to her about God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ – but couldn’t do anything about it and I was not deterred.  The Scriptures had taught me to, “Preach in season and out – and faithfully carry out the work of an evangelist” (2 Tim. 4:1-5).  Through this meeting, Caroline and I became friends and she gradually turned to Christ and broke ties with the Krishna movement.

In the past Caroline had been an actress /singer in London’s production of ‘Hair’, playing the role of Sheila for two and a half years.  It was clear that many seekers like Caroline were confused by the hit song “My Sweet Lord” by George Harrison of the “Beatles” which incorporated a chorus with the “Krishna Mantra Chant”.  I later learned Caroline was personal friends with the Beatles and others who were in the England music and theatrical arts community.

The truth was burned on my soul, “For there is one God and one mediator between God and men – the man Christ Jesus” (I Timothy 2:5). “It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth” that healing comes. And, “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven, given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:10-12).   Lifting up the name of Jesus Christ was a privilege – sharing a message that God backs up with His Holy Spirit (Acts 10:34-48).

THE JESUS FAMILY MINISTRY IN ENGLAND

London Jesus Family Photo

Refurbishing the old home for occupancy had gone well. With the practical work completed, heat and lights on, our team took occupancy.  We were thankful for our new home base, grateful to God for his provision and mercies that were renewed each morning.   

Don Schendel put the finishing touches on the first floor meeting room by painting a large wall mural depicting Christ as the bridge for all humanity to gain access to that which is eternal.  This addition provided an instant spiritual conversation piece for those that did not have a spiritual clue about God, or His Son Jesus Christ. 

Next on our agenda was the restoration of the two story office building that would be our new operations headquarters.  With paint rollers and brushes in hand we set to the task and soon had this modest but functional office space redecorated.  The downstairs had a small room in the back which I used for a bedroom.  I was not up to commune living at this point in my life.  I remember my friend Dennis liked to keep his boa constrictor snake in an aquarium in the middle room of the downstairs which always alarmed people when they saw the heat light on and investigated.  

In these early days booking ‘The Sheep’ into concert venues and telling others about Jesus Christ was our main focus. "The Sheep" would play and the Good News of Jesus Christ would be shared. On occasion, we hooked up with ‘Larry Norman’, ‘Randy Stonehill’, ‘The Mighty Flyers’, or ‘Cable House’ to do joint concerts. 

The band named The SheepDescription: Larry Norman Posterize.jpg

 

 

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THE UK LIVING ROOM – UPPER NORWOOD

As a mission team, we wanted to reach locals from our area and decided to redecorate the downstairs of our office building. We made it into an after-hours spot. This attracted youth from Upper Norwood who came on Fridays and Saturdays for non-alcoholic drinks, snacks, and music. They flooded in after the pubs let out at 11 P.M.  We called it the ‘Living Room’, borrowing the name from the Christian outreach storefront in San Francisco, we filled the night spot many weekend nights with neighborhood youth. A variety of Christian musicians shared Christ-centered rock and roll music, lyrics and testimonies. Each dimension of outreach seemed to lead to the next seamlessly.

    Life was an adventure as a follower of Christ during the era of the Jesus Movement: We took risks and were involved in amazing things because of God’s grace (Acts 4:33). Our lives and those we touched were changed by Jesus Christ (II Cor. 5:17-21). We began ministries by faith, often having very little money or resources – only a vision of what God was capable of doing (Heb. 11:1). God provided properties and resources to open Christian houses, ranches, coffeehouses, restaurants, Christian book stores and small businesses which provided work and housing for those who were coming to faith in Christ. We also started Christian music groups/bands, Christian newspapers, developed theater teams and wrote songs and tracts about God. 

Everyman & Staff

On the heels of the ‘Living Room’ was the writing and publication of a new British Christian newspaper, ‘Everyman’.   Sue Palosarri was editor, Don Schendel Art and Layout editor, Arlene Czekalski Editorial Assistant, Lynn Malmberg, Margie Pinnow, Aram Outmin, Carol Durkin and I assisted with writing and distribution. Other Jesus Family community members took the newspaper to the streets as a tool for sharing our faith in God and His Son Jesus Christ. 

 

Jim film strip        

“How the Jesus People Came Alive” Concerts

  Sue Palosaari Cowper

  “Meanwhile Jim and the band were cooking-up and rehearsing a show that would stun and stagger London audiences by its very verve, titled ‘How the Jesus People Came Alive’.  This was to be our grand-slam approach: grab the audience with music and our hippy attire, and before they even realized what was coming, let fly with the gospel. An approach that had worked before, it was motivated by Frampton's despair and earnest desire to wrench his boys from Berg's god-awful cult, the Children of God which had so mesmerized and entrapped young people and was now fanning out across Britain and onto the Continent.
We had a carte blanche open door to replace Berg's Children of God deception with its first cousin, ‘The Truth’.  No hidden agenda, no secret prophet – just Jesus Christ!  Already accomplished in road show ballyhoo, Jim and the band had no trouble developing a more sophisticated staging. Everyone knew their paces: Jesus freaks would get the word out on the streets during the day; audiences would come, the band would play, and by evening's end, more would be added to what we were now calling ‘The Jesus Family’.

Fred Gardner was selected to give his meaty testimony. His imposing build and tangled beard gave him a brute presence on stage. His personal story was jaw-dropping, and Fred knew how to deliver it with impeccable timing. Jim would follow with the wrap-up call to salvation. Altogether, it was something we'd done many times, and we'd developed a sense for the theatrics of performance, earnest, enthusiastic, believable.

From a trial venue we moved to the Greyhound Concert Hall and up a notch to Croyden’s Fairfield Hall, following on the heels of ‘The Carpenters’ who’d been there a week earlier. With signs of appeal and decent audience response, things were looking up.

Programme cover Jesus People showJesus People Music Concert poster

At one of these venues, Jim deviated from script, inviting any who were saved out of the audience to come up onto the stage. Across the house we arose, one by one, some carrying small children, attending Christians / Jesus freaks all moved towards the atrium, climbing the stairs to stand behind Jim, as we sang one of his favorites, "I have decided to follow Jesus." Talk about an electric moment! You could feel the zap in the air. Jim gave another invitation, this time to salvation. That night just about everyone raised their hands, bowed their heads, and offered a prayer.

While on stage, holding baby Jed in my arms, an idea hit me regarding the larger Christian presence on stage.  The Holy Spirit translated this in my heart and let me see how we could use more participation of our group on stage in a more dramatic show. I envisioned a story that would unfold, using us as raw material. I couldn't wait to tell Jim.”

 To Be Continued


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Dave Hoyt and his wife Ginny reside in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He grew up a troubled teen in Los Angeles. In 1966 he moved to San Francisco’s ‘Haight District’ seeking truth and God. Reaching a crisis of belief in Eastern Religions – he turned to prayer and came to a saving faith in Jesus Christ. He went on to be an early participant in the Jesus People Movement in the USA and Europe. He continues as a follower of Jesus Christ.

Read previous installments in David Hoyt's
"Jesus Revolution" Series:

Part 1: Jesus People Days

Part 2: A Cry Rushed Upward to a Place Called Heaven

Part 3: Ripe for Change and Heart Revolution

Part 4: Recollections of My Search for Truth

Part 5: My Search - A Prelude to Finding God

Part 6: A Search for God Unraveling

Part 7: An Appointment with God

Part 8: Launched into a New Life

Part 9: A Steep Learning Curve

Part 10: God - An Incredible Teacher

Part 11: Lancaster - A Desert Call

Part 12: Back in the City - San Francisco

Part 13: The SF Bay Area Jesus People Movement - Episode One

Part 14: The SF Bay Area Jesus People Movement - Episode Two

Part 15: Mission in Our Blood

Part 16: Crossroads

Part 17: Our Decision - Their Agenda

Part 18: Over My Head

Part 19: Dark Night of the Soul

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Last Update: 2017-07-24 18:59