Materialism

May 1975
1975 HFP, Volume 7 Number 3

Construction of the Alaska Pipeline began. Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge took control of Cambodia. Members of the Symbionese Liberation Army robbed a bank in Sacramento, with kidnapped newspaper heiress Patty Hearst driving the getaway car. (These were strange times.) And in the central highlands of Vietnam, 25,000 North Vietnamese troops began a final offensive that resulted in the eventual defeat of Hue and Da Nang. Nguyen Van Thieu resigned as president of Vietnam, Saigon fell nine days later and US forces pulled out. The American war in Vietnam was at long last over.

The focus of the HFP had turned to prisons, jails and juvenile correction facilities, and we were offering both the paper and Duane Pederson's books free to any prisoner who requested them. Our articles and other content took a simple, no-nonsense approach, speaking very directly to our readers behind bars.

Our main article explained that materialism wasn't just for the rich. Even the poor and those "doing time" are often materialistic in their outlook without realizing it, thinking that another dose of their favorite drug or another night of sex would solve all of their problems. We are materialistic whenever we start to believe that getting and possessing things or people will make us happy. We begin to truly live, even in a prison cell, when we invest our lives instead in a personal relationship with Jesus.

Our friends Jack, Audrey and Armando shared their individual journeys to finding Jesus. Jack's experiences led him through drug addiction to dealing drugs to paranoia, and finally the realization that his future was either prison or death. Audrey turned to LSD to escape the loneliness and her memories of abuse, but every time when the drugs wore off she was left with only hate and hurt. Armando went from alcohol to drugs to prison, sentenced to 5-10 years at Sing Sing at the age of 21. But in the midst of their pain and hopelessness, all three met Jesus, and that made all the difference.

We also printed part of a chapter from Duane's book "Jesus is Alive and Well," offering a free copy of the complete book to any prisoner who wrote requesting one.

The photo at right shows a group of young Jesus People praying together at a Gathering. The cartoon is just a happy hippie reminding us that Jesus loves us.

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