One year on Channel 4, Mark Dowd explored for two hours on the ground in SE Asia, the devastation of the Tsunami and asked locals and himself the questions, 'Can belief in a loving God be reconciled with such natural disasters or do politics, economics and science offer more hope and enlightenment?'
A former monk, Mark is a writer, presenter and television producer. After graduating with first class honours in political science, he trained for priesthood in the Dominican order at Blackfriars Priory in Oxford. He gained an M Phil in international relations at St Antony's College, Oxford, then joined the Times as a journalist. He later worked for LWT and the BBC as a current affairs producer, including six highly successful years as producer/director on Panorama.
Mark is an amazing producer, and I found his interviews, interactions and commentary moving, and engaging.
You can go to the channel 4 web site, for the programme, here. It lists the expected responses by people to the question, including God's judgement, Karma, testing. None of which seem satisfactory, and many distasteful. The most powerful part of the programme for me was the loss of faith Mark had suffered, and his personal involvement and mourning through the programme, that obviously tapped into his questions over the years.
The programme ended powerfully with Mark sharing what he had come to believe, about God, with the image of Christ on the Cross, as hope that God had entered into all this pain and loss, and was more believable than ever as a loving and caring God, and the statement from his child hood confessions 'Lord I believe, help my unbelief'
Nancey Murphy one of my theological heroes appeared near the end in conversation with Mark, and her suggestions seemed to carry great impact and hope for Mark, and as I was watching for me.