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Mind of the Maker - series review with videos

A series of Sunday evening conversations under the dome of St Paul's have concluded with a call for us to be 'more imaginative about our faith'.

Speaking at the final Eucharist in the Mind of the Maker series, the Revd Canon Michael Hampel, Precentor of St Paul's, looked back at the four conversations which had taken place during the Easter period.

Reflecting on the series, which had seen Frank Skinner, Clarissa Dickson Wright, Sir Andrew Motion and P D James discuss their own personal journeys of faith, Canon Hampel said: "Let’s learn from our friends and be more imaginative about our faith. And one of the best ways of doing that is simply to tell our stories – stories about ourselves and stories about God."


The four instantly recognisable names from modern British culture came to St Paul's to discuss how their faith had shaped their lives and influenced their work.

Comedian Frank Skinner rued the lack of silence in our world. He said that silence is where you find God because mere words so often fall short of the truth.

Celebrity chef, Clarissa Dickson Wright spoke candidly about her abusive upbringing and of her alcoholism from which she is clear she was rescued by God.

Former Poet Laureate, Sir Andrew Motion was open about his devout but sceptical faith. He has no fixed answers to questions of faith and doctrine. 

Detective novelist P D James talked animatedly about the importance of goodness and of our obligation to respond to human need – even if that meant placing our religious duties second to the needs of our neighbour, which is effectively the only true way of meeting one’s religious obligations: what you do for the least of these my brothers and sisters, you do for me.

The series started and ended with a celebration of the Eucharist, and the four conversations in between were held against the backdrop of music and readings reflecting the tastes and interests of our speakers.

Canon Hampel said: "It has been said that we are most like God when we are being creative and that this is the interpretation of what it means to be made in the image of God. The four main speakers have been asked to talk as they are people in the public eye whose work is creative and who have made their own journeys of faith in public and private."