Pandemic & Community

While searching through his photo archive, 44 Gaukel tenant John Spaulding found a photo essay he did in the early 1990s.

“At the height of the AIDS pandemic, long before the medicine now used to treat HIV, many people diagnosed with HIV/AIDS not only faced a deadly disease but also, at their hour of most urgent spiritual need, found themselves rejected by their churches and communities, either from outright homophobia or fear of the disease.”

“While working on a related project I had the good fortune to meet the Reverend Jerry Anderson, who co-founded the Episcopal Caring Response to AIDS (ECRA). He created a ministry specifically tailored to meet the spiritual and pastoral counselling needs of people who in many other ways had been cast out of their communities, even their families.”

“I had the privilege of spending a couple of days with Rev. Anderson and documenting his ministry and the profound impact that his efforts had on those called to join the ECRA community.”

“Thirty years later, as I looked through the negatives from this project, I found the images no less moving than I did back then. The faces in these images are a powerful reminder of the value of community during that pandemic – and a good reminder for the current one.”

Learn more about John Spaulding Photography

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