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Fern Britton talks to high-profile figures about how their beliefs have shaped their lives.
Fern Britton launches a new series, talking to four high profile figures about how their beliefs have shaped their lives. She begins with a heart to heart with Dolly Parton. The Queen of Country Music has a devoted army of fans and her last concert in the UK packed out London's giant O2 arena.
But away from her flirtatious stage image, Dolly has a spirituality that underpins everything she does. "I don't claim to be anything. Let God judge me. I think God wants us to have fun."
Also in the four part series, Fern talks to former Prime Minister Tony Blair; Nobel Peace Prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu; and actor Sheila Hancock.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu has spent a lifetime fighting injustice in South Africa and other parts of the world. It won him a Nobel Peace Prize. In this frank and moving interview for the lead up to Christmas, he tells Fern Britton he is not an optimist, but a prisoner of hope.
He also gives her a unique insight into his ideas about God; he says that he never doubted that this was an omnipotent God, but when he meets him, he will certainly ask, 'Why is it that you test us, couldn't you think of a better way?'.
Former Prime Minister Tony Blair tells Fern why he thinks faith has an important part to play in the modern world. He talks about his own conversion to Catholicism, and why British people are so reserved about discussing their beliefs. He also reveals his hopes for the faith foundation he has set up to encourage people from different religions to work together.
Sheila Hancock tells Fern why becoming a Quaker has filled a spiritual gap in her life. She lost her mother and two husbands to cancer and, for a time, lost her faith too. But after the death of her second husband, John Thaw, she found comfort in writing about her experiences and authored two books which became bestsellers.
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