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Jon Snow on truth, inclusion and 'The Things That Matter'

Truth, inclusion and making time for contemplation are the things that matter most to Jon Snow, who says that being in a cathedral feels like 'home'.

The second in a new series of interviews with high-profile figures, Jon Snow - journalist and TV presenter for Channel 4 and ITV - spoke to the Cathedral's Chancellor, Canon Mark Oakley.

In this interview on The Things That Matter, Jon Snow talks about the importance of speaking truth to power, how we must find more time to think and reflect, and our sometimes detrimental relationship to digital media and information in the 21st century.

Watch and listen

He encourages us to be honest with ourselves and to ask: "Is it we who gave birth to extremism” through our wars and indifference to the vulnerable? He regrets the media did not lead an early charge for government action on Ebola because "it was in a place in which we knew little and cared less.”

When asked what he would like churches to be doing more of, he states simply, "Inclusion", adding, "the churches need to reach out well beyond their own faith...I think society needs connection as never before.”

Closing the interview, Canon Oakley thanks Mr Snow, saying: " are in a profession of information but you remind us, more than many, about formation - about who we are becoming as human beings, and where we are going wrong. To make that connection between information and formation is really very helpful, and many of us are very grateful.”

The Things That Matter

It has been said that there is a ‘wisdom deficit’ in our society and a real search by people to find words that are trustworthy, authentic and energising.

In this series of short interviews, The Reverend Canon Mark Oakley asks respected people what they believe are the things that really matter in this life, the insights they have gained that they want to hand on to others – especially the young.

Canon Oakley says: "The poet TS Eliot famously asked ‘where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge, and where is the knowledge we have lost in information?’ In a culture shaped by adverts, PR-speak and the desire for quick clarity on everything, there is in many of us a real thirst for a deep and authentic wisdom that comes from distilled human experience. ‘Where can we place our trust?’ is an urgent question of our times. I hope this series might offer some insights from respected people and help lead us towards an answer.”

Watch and listen to the first interview in the series, with Baroness Doreen Lawrence of Clarendon