Monday, 28 March 2011

Peter Owen Jones ~ extreme pilgrim and vicar

[Updated with additional information on 2nd May 2012]
If you warm to the thoughtful articles I've written, you'll very likely enjoy documentaries featuring this man.  He's thoughtful, unusual, and determined in all sorts of ways. Somehow he manages to incorporate his own quest and convictions within the Anglican church and his ministry in it.

Here is a recording of him reading his Letter to God, which I gather is published in his book Letters from an Extreme Pilgrim: Reflections on life, love and the soul

The documentaries of which I have seen all or parts are: 
Information given on these websites is slight, but they do provide episode lists.  These series have screened on the BBC Knowledge, a channel not yet available in New Zealand, but I have heard it may become part of the Sky selection later this year.

For those want to see more in the meantime I provide the following links:
The episode of Extreme Pilgrim set in China was the one which spoke to me most directly:

Here is a link to the episode on Ascetic Christianity.

In addition to this he presented the one and a half hour documentary "The lost gospels" (2010) which screened on BBC4.  Here is part of the synopsis to be found on their web page:
'Documentary presented by Anglican priest Pete Owen Jones which explores the huge number of ancient Christian texts that didn't make it into the New Testament.  Shocking and challenging, these were works in which Jesus didn't die, took revenge on his enemies and kissed Mary Magdalene on the mouth - a Jesus unrecognisable from that found in the traditional books of the New Testament.' [ etc]
Having endured significant spiritual rigours myself I can see that Peter must be more than usually tough to have got through the filming of this string of documentaries as intact as he appears to be!  Such exploration is not for the faint hearted!

Other points of reference can be found in:
It's always a relief to find that there are other people in the world who take the journey of life and soul seriously and actually live out their convictions, rather than just dabbing at it and mouthing word balloons of old platitudes.  I don't always understand where he's coming from or what he does; my views differs on some points, but these differences bring richness and an expansion of my own perspectives which I welcome.  I find his unusual candour heart-warming.  This is surely a friend as yet unmet.  Hi Pete, I'm over here!

Kia kaha Peter, I wish you strength to continue being the man you are.  You  have chosen a path which requires significant rigour.  I thank you for the gift of your work which gives me hope and encouragement with my own.

Note: this article was originally published in my Rushleigh ~ Movies, Television and Entertainment Chronicle.  I've placed a copy of it here for the convenience of readers interested in similar sorts of articles.

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