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Switch to Forum Live View Order of the Holy Family
9 years ago  ::  Apr 14, 2008 - 5:49PM #1
cokebottlegreen
Posts: 51
Does anybody remember the Order of the Holy Family? They were a religious order run out of a parish church in Denver back in the 70's, and wore denim habits with a peace cross necklace. What ever happened to them?
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9 years ago  ::  Apr 15, 2008 - 10:17AM #2
RJMcElwain
Posts: 3,013
I just did a Google and got lots of hits, but nothing on the first few pages about the Order.:confused:
Robert J. McElwain

"The strongest reason for people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government." (Supposedly)Thomas Jefferson

"He who is not angry when there is just cause for anger is immoral."
St. Thomas Aquinas

One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. Plato
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9 years ago  ::  Apr 15, 2008 - 10:30AM #3
maplewood
Posts: 4,517
Sounds like they went the way of the 70's.

:)
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9 years ago  ::  Apr 15, 2008 - 6:49PM #4
JoanTreese
Posts: 2,531
I vaguely remember the group... don't think they are in Denver any longer.  Maybe they moved to Boulder??:D
Joan

He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? [Micah 6:8]
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9 years ago  ::  Apr 15, 2008 - 6:49PM #5
JoanTreese
Posts: 2,531
I vaguely remember the group... don't think they are in Denver any longer.  Maybe they moved to Boulder??:D
Joan

He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? [Micah 6:8]
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9 years ago  ::  Apr 21, 2008 - 3:50PM #6
Amphikalein
Posts: 14
Some online research yielded this, from the history page for the website of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Denver:

"Father Jon Marr Stark was appointed rector, January 1, 1969. Rev. Stark believed in traditional “high church” liturgy coupled with a strong involvement in the social issues of the day. In the mid-1970’s, Jon Stark founded the Order of the Holy Family (OHF), a monastic order of the Episcopal Church. The Order had a strong commitment to Denver’s rising homeless population and began using the St. Andrew’s undercroft as an overnight shelter for these individuals. Bishop William C. Frey acknowledged the Order by mitering Fr. Stark as its first Abbot. In 1984, the Abbot and the remaining brothers left Denver for a new abbey in Santa Fe, New Mexico."

So far i haven't found any current Santa Fe reference to the OHF, but i'll keep looking as time allows.

-scott
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9 years ago  ::  Jul 15, 2008 - 4:35AM #7
dopelganger
Posts: 1
Back in the 70's, I was with the Order of the Holy Cross.  I worked with Sr. Judith from Holy Family and the Sisters of Charity in Boulder City, NV at St. Jude's Home for Children.  After that summer while traveling to Mt. Calvery Monastery in Santa Barbara, I spent a couple of days with their community in San Francisco.  I especially remember the joy and celebration they would bring to the counter culture with their eager witness to counter some of the turbulance of that decade.  I can still hear the sound of their 'jungle bells' on the ends of their ropes around their waist.
I know there was a split in  the community involving Jon Stark....I don't know what it was about.  I feel that God raises up a group of people during certain ages ... when we...don't do the job we are  suppose to do.  Every once in a while, I can't help but think...what some of them did or witnessed after the community went on.
I am very grateful for their witness with fond memories!
joel kauhl
Gnostic Christian
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9 years ago  ::  Aug 06, 2008 - 1:46PM #8
Voyager
Posts: 6
I was a member of that group in the 70s.  Did you have any questions?
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9 years ago  ::  Aug 06, 2008 - 2:40PM #9
maplewood
Posts: 4,517
[QUOTE=Voyager;672973]I was a member of that group in the 70s.  Did you have any questions?[/QUOTE]

Please do!

What became of them?  What are they doing now?  Is the description of them here accurate, to the best of your knowledge?

Any info would be appreciated.  Thank you!
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9 years ago  ::  Aug 06, 2008 - 11:47PM #10
Voyager
Posts: 6
I left the Order in 1973 because one of the brothers and I wanted to get married and Fr. Jon did not like the brother or the idea of my marrying him.  After I left, I understand the numbers dwindled, and as the webpage on St. Andrew's History says, a few remaining brothers moved with Fr. Jon to Santa Fe.  They may have had one sister at that time - it seems as though I saw a newspaper article when they left - I was still in Denver.  I guess they  never really 'made it' in Santa Fe.  The last time I googled Fr. Jon, he was the owner of a dog kennel outside Santa Fe.  I can't find any web presence or history of the Order after it went to Santa Fe.  Fr. Jon is apparently not active as a priest in the Diocese of New Mexico - he wasn't listed among their clergy when I last visited the Diocesan website.  Fr. Jon must be in his late 70s or early 80s - he was forty-ish when I was in the Order, and I was in my early 20s. 
     The Order was in those days, quite controversial, and although it did good work, I think that the people of the parish felt that it was becoming run-down and dangerous.  They were reluctant to park their cars beside the Church.  People (not the brothers/sisters) were selling drugs right outside the doors.  While I was there, the police busted the rectory and hauled many of the brothers downtown to jail - I don't believe anyone was caught with anything - we felt it was just harrassment at the time.  But, it was bad press for the parish and for the Church.  Many of the brothers and sisters were right off the streets themselves, so there was some pretty bizarre behavior going on at times.  One morning we came into the Church and found that it had been used for a Black Mass the night before., and we had no idea how people had even gotten in - all the doors had been locked.  Things were pretty out of control. 
     I do stay in contact with one of the brothers - one of those who was in Berkeley as Dopelganger mentions earlier in this thread.  He now lives in Seattle.  I often wonder what became of some of the other people who were members when I was.  Very few people in the Order had any background in the Episcopal Church when they came into the Order - it was the ministry and the charisma which attracted them.  In its heyday, the Order fed 5,000 free meals/month, and provided overnight facilities for 1,000 guests/month.  It provided counseling for runaways, draft dodgers, operated a free clinic with free medicines and no name reporting on communicable diseases.
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