Thursday, October 11, 2012
Woman behind mysterious ‘Jesus photo’ grants first video interview
By Mark Ellis
Senior Correspondent, ASSIST News Service
LAGUNA BEACH, CALIFORNIA (ANS) -- Was it an actual photograph of Jesus, an angel, or someone else? Jane Dobson, the woman who first brought this unusual story to light, visited Southern California recently, and granted her first video interview explaining the remarkable incident witnessed by her family and friends on a boat off the coast of Maine.
It was a blustery Saturday along the shore near Owl’s Head, with whitecaps forming to the horizon’s edge. Jane received some jolting news that morning. A close friend in Wisconsin had passed away the night before.
“She was a beloved sister in Christ, a very dear friend of mine,” Jane notes. “Her husband got up and thought she was asleep, but suddenly he realized she wasn’t breathing.” Her friend Kathleen died from a massive, unexpected heart attack at age 67.
Jane began to grieve for her friend. The Dobson house was full of weekend guests – their kids and old family friends, which made it more difficult for Jane to find time alone with God. Before she received the bad news about her friend, she had been praying that Jesus would reveal Himself in new ways to her house-guests.
“The wind was blowing so hard I couldn’t open my windows even an inch,” Jane recalls. But then suddenly, about 2:00 p.m., the wind stopped. “It went from big white caps to flat calm – like a mill pond,” she notes. “That usually doesn’t happen in October in Maine.”
Due to the favorable weather change, Jane’s husband, Bill, suggested they go for a ride on their boat. Everyone quickly agreed and the group of 10 piled into the Dobson’s 36-foot Hinckley picnic boat, “Lady Jane,” and set out along the coast of Maine.
Jane continued to grieve on the boat. “Everybody left me alone because I was so sad,” she notes. Jane, a retired nurse with an active prayer ministry, offered praise for Kathleen’s life and asked Jesus to send comfort.
After an hour on the vessel, Jane felt a noticeable change in the atmosphere. As their boat rounded a bend close to Owl’s Head State Park’s majestic lighthouse, something unusual happened.
“I felt God’s presence so powerfully it was astounding to me,” she says. “It was like someone flipped a switch and I went from horrific grief to inexpressible joy.” She was so overcome by the peace and presence of God that her grief vanished.
Jane’s daughter, Kirsten recalls the same moment. “We were both praying for peace and comfort for Kathleen’s daughter,” she says. “All of a sudden the most amazing sense of peace came over us.”
About five minutes later, they heard their friend Michael say excitedly, “Who is this guy in white in the picture?” Michael had a new Sony digital camera and felt inspired to attempt some artistic shots on their outing.
“I was trying to be creative with the photos I took that day,” Michael recalls. “My wife Elizabeth and I were sitting there and I was looking at her glasses. I thought that would be a cool picture to take a shot of the reflection in her glasses.”
Immediately he pulled up the images on his digital camera and there appeared to be an unknown figure captured in the tenth photo. “Who is this in Elizabeth’s glasses?” he asked, as those who sat nearby began to look curiously.
In the photo, a mysterious hooded figure dressed in white stood on the inside edge of the boat, leaning slightly forward, with his head bent down, as if praying.
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