Silence

Andrew Garfield and Adam Driver in 'Silence'. Credit: Kerry Brown
Martin Scorsese’s film Silence – due for release in the UK on 1 January – is as much about addressing extreme moral options as it is about martyrdom, according to the Director of St Beuno’s Jesuit Spirituality Centre in North Wales. Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Sunday, Fr Roger Dawson SJ compared the challenges to faith portrayed in the film with what many Christians face today.Silence is based on the novel of the same name by Shūsaku Endō and tells the story of...
Andrew Garfield in Silence Credit Kerry Brown
The Christian publisher SPCK is offering a 20% discount to friends and supporters of the Jesuits on two new books to mark the film adaptation by Martin Scorsese of Shūsaku Endō’s novel Silence. In addition to publishing a special edition of the novel, SPCK has also recently published a new book In Search of Japan’s Hidden Christians by John Dougill, which describes the history behind the story. Christian missionaries, including many Jesuits, arrived in Japan in 1549 and over...
Andrew Garfield with Ben
In November 2014, I was putting my cereal bowl on the trolley at the end of the (silent) breakfast at St Beuno’s when Ben, the Assistant Chef, sidled up to me, inclined his head towards one of the retreatants and whispered, ‘Father Roger, is that Spiderman in the dining room?’  ‘Don’t tell anyone, Ben!’ was the reply. Andrew Garfield, the star of two Spiderman films, supporting actor in ‘The Social Network’ and the lead in Scorsese...
Martin Scorsese talks to the Jesuits
This week Oscar-winning director Martin Scorsese gave a private screening of his new film Silence to a group of 300 Jesuits in Rome. The film, based on a novel by Shusaku Endo, tells the story of 17th-century Jesuit missionaries who travel to Japan in search of their mentor, who is rumoured to have renounced the faith under torture at the hands of the Japanese regime.After the screening Mr. Scorsese told the audience “this is a story of faith that is carried by the Jesuits, so I...
Martin Scorsese directs Andrew Garfield on the set of 'Silence': Kerry Brown/Paramount Pictures
Actor Andrew Garfield has been speaking about his experience of undertaking a seven-day silent retreat at St Beuno’s spirituality and retreat centre in North Wales, in preparation for his role in the Martin Scorsese film Silence, which is due to be released in the UK in the New Year. Scorsese has been passionate about making the film since he read Shūsaku Endō’s novel of the same name back in 1989; and it is due to receive its premiere in the Vatican within the next few weeks.The...
Liam Neeson in 'Silence'
Paramount Pictures have confirmed that Martin Scorsese’s much anticipated film about two 17th century Jesuit missionaries will be released in the United States shortly before Christmas, with wider distribution in the New Year.Silence is based on the novel of the same name by Japanese author Shūsaku Endō, and it has been Scorsese’s passion to turn it into a film since 1991. Various problems delayed the project going into production until April 2013, when Scorsese said he would begin...
Silent retreats – a space where God can take you by surpriseSt Beuno's Jesuit Spirituality Centre in the foothills of Snowdonia has been a Jesuit house of learning and prayer since 1848 and a residential retreat centre for 30 years. Tim McEvoy is a new member of the spiritual direction team.Tim’s spiritual journey began as a student at Warwick ten years ago when he participated in a week of guided prayer led by the Jesuit spirituality outreach team.  Whilst doing further...
A Pink and Purple Sunset - found on unsplash
There is a language beyond words. Silence creates the space for it. Sometimes when we feel powerless to speak words that are meaningful, when we have to back off into unknowing and helplessness but remain in the situation, silence creates the space that’s needed for a deeper happening to occur. But often, initially, that silence is uneasy. It begins as a small frightened thing, and only slowly grows into the kind of warmth that dissolves tension.There are many times when we have no helpful...
A former pupil of Donhead Preparatory School and Wimbledon College is the new Spider-Man. Tom Holland, who attended the Jesuit college in South West London until 2012, will take over the role of Peter Parker who becomes the Marvel superhero when the latest film hits cinemas in 2017.The producer of the new Spider-Man film, Amy Pascal, described Tom as “the perfect actor to bring Spider-Man’s story into the Marvel Cinematic Universe,” saying that they needed “a vibrant, talented young actor...
Christians in Nagasaki have been celebrating the Jesuits and laity who risked (and often gave) their lives for their faith in 17th century Japan. 17 March was the 150th anniversary of the 'Hidden Christians' of the country revealing themselves to an amazed Dutch missionary in 1865. Pope Francis was represented by Cardinal Orlando B Quevedo, Archbishop of Cotabato in the Philippines. In a letter read out at the celebrations, the Pope asked that Cardinal Quevedo should remember those who gave...

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