|Roy Matson & Hurdal Parish Pastor
|This picture of Roy Matson and what appears to be a minister of the church, was taken during Roy's last visit to Norway, in 1976.
His travel diary indicates a visit to Hof Church for Sunday service. But as of October 2006, and information from Atle Rønning of Oslo, we know this picture was taken at Hurdal Church.
I believe this is a Sunday get-up for my father. We can speculate what the two must have been talking about. The Reverend appears to be very interested and hasn't yet dropped his biblical references in digust. Could this meeting be after the service or before? My guess is that this picture and conversation took place after the service, and after everyone had gone home.
My cousin Mike Berg, on viewing this picture, jokingly suggests that his Uncle Roy may be telling the pastor a thing or two, or straightening his mind on a few matters, probably religious. This may not be too far from the truth. Roy had strong opinions about such things. It is unlikely that he would have criticized the religious leader. But he and the pastor could very well have been talking about the history of state religions and their impact on its people, especially those who traveled to America.
In the background, we see the quiet observers, the ancestors we are all trying to locate. Many of these people, no doubt, observed a Norway and community in dramatic transition during the 18th and 19th centuries. If you look closely at the names on these tombstones, they may well resemble names in cemeteries in America.
Even if this picture was not taken at Hof sub-parish, (and as of October 2006, we now know that it wasn't) and if the year is incorrect, everything else written about this picture probably still applies.
We now know that the other man in this picture talking with my father, Roy H. Matson is the Hurdal Church Rector, John H. Svensen.
First Posted in 2001
Updated 25 October 2006 (underlined)