Upon a close examination of Leonard's Salvation Mountain you'll find it adorned with hundreds of flowers. He tells this story:
A really religious lady came up and she scolded me,saying,
"You cant paint Jesus pretty, you gotta take those flowers down!"
That kinda bugged me. To me, it was so backwards. She would say things like
"If you really love Jesus, you're going to be persecuted and people are really going to hate you".
That didn't hit me good. I figured, "Jesus is pretty", And I can preach Jesus pretty.
So I got busy and made even more flowers and put them everywhere.
I guess I'm stubborner than a mule. If you tell me I can't do something, look out. Cause I'll try real hard. I don't know why the flowers are there. Maybe it's because people will look at them and say-Thats's Nice!. "Instead of me preaching and maybe hurting someone's feelings. I would rather present something nice". "I believe that God Is Love, and I believe that Jesus is beautiful and pretty". "We should all be comfortable talking about Gods love and the prettiness of God and the flowers". "And if the opportunity ever came up and I could talk about that". "I'd let the conversation go on and on". "I'd never change the subject". If you visit Salvation mountain, you'll get to meet Leonard. He's an kind man. Consumed with the constant upkeep and creation of his mountain.
He won't ask you for money, you won't get a sermon, but if you ask, he'll give you a tour of his work.
Leonard is an older man, but with a firm belief in Christ and the dedication of a doctor, you'll find
him peddling his bicycle 5 miles to the town of Niland for groceries. Always ready with a smile,
an easy going but determined man, Leonard embodies part of the true American spirit.
County Officials at one time tried to bull doze Leonard's work. Saying that the paint was an
environmental hazard With a nearby bombing range with tons of live explosives everywhere.
With the help of artists,museums, and the public, Leonard was able to save his mountain. Today
every winter Leonard has hundreds of visitors to his monument to God.
Leonard Knight has since died, but his monument to God still lives on In Slab City California