Babe Born

December 15, 1970
1970 HFP, Volume 2 Number 24

Christmas was coming, and 1970 was drawing to a close. It would be remembered as the year of the Kent State shootings and Apollo 13, the year bizarre cult leader Charles Manson was convicted of murder with four of his followers. It had been a year of beginnings, as architect Paolo Soleri began building his desert utopia, Arcosanti, in Arizona. It had been a year of endings, as the Beatles released their final album, "Let It Be". And it was the year America really discovered the Jesus People as major articles in Time and Look magazines covered the Movement in a big way.

200,000 copies of this issue of the HFP were being printed for distribution at the 1971 Rose Parade on New Year's day in Pasadena at which Billy Graham would be the grand marshal.

Our HFP house on Fountain Avenue in Hollywood was becoming a regular hangout for potluck dinners, Bible studies, and Bible teach-ins. A young brother named Lewis who had found one of our newspapers on the bus and called us at 3 a.m. to talk was becoming a treasured part of the house. "I had been through the wringer - addict, alcoholic, strung out," Lewis wrote in the HFP. "Jesus is so real, so near to me. The friends at the HFP have become my family. It's home, and I'm at peace with God and myself."

Our first annual Jesus People Festival of Music was scheduled at the Palladium two days after Christmas, with more than a dozen bands and a light show. Our friends at the Agape Inn IV were celebrating six months of music and ministry at their coffeehouse in Newport Beach. The Jesus rock band Lord Led had just released a new album, and were making plans for concerts at schools, parks, churches and jails. A reader from Ohio had written to the HFP asking us to "stop trying to corrupt a good, upstanding righteous atheist" with our "Christian propaganda." We knew then that we must be doing something right!

Our switchboard section, the Wall, had grown to two full pages and listed Jesus raps, coffeehouses, Bible studies and events in Arizona, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Washington and even in Canada.

Dale Yancy created our front cover cartoon, shown at right, that pictured Mary and Joseph passing a bizarre department-store Santa Claus on their way to the manger in Bethlehem. Dale also drew our satirical poster shown at lower right, depicting a "Christian credit card" parodying modern Christians who view salvation as a cosmic charge account.

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