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News : Force strong for new Jedi church
Posted by admin on 1970/1/1 11:40:00 (847 reads)

BBC NEWS 

Two Star Wars-loving brothers planning a Jedi church hope it will be much nearer than a galaxy far, far away.

Barney and Daniel Jones want fellow devotees to be able to join them close to their home on Anglesey. Yoda

Barney, 26 - or Master Jonba Hehol - and Daniel, 21 - Master Morda Hehol - head the UK Church of the Jedi, in honour of the film's good knights.

They say their services will include sermons on "the Force," light sabre training, and meditation techniques.

Hairdresser Barney became interested in the Jedi faith after 390,000 other Star Wars fans across England and Wales declared it as their religion on the 2001 census.

An internet campaign was fought to see Jedi officially included in the list and although this did not happen, collators included a special code to register the Jedis.

He said: "As children we always watched the Star Wars films anyway. We noticed that there were a couple of sites on the internet, Jedi church sites.

Obviously, if someone starts to try and use the good force for greed and power, they are going to bring negative interference into the meetings
Barney Jones

"We printed off a couple of sermons and did a sermon in our house for a couple of friends one night."

Barney and his musician brother Daniel, from Holyhead, help run four websites devoted to the development of the "faith".

They plan to go to the official opening of a Surrey-based branch or "chapter" of the UK Church of the Jedi in April, and hope to hire an Anglesey venue for their own services.

Already six followers regularly meet in north Wales to discuss setting up the "church".

"My brother and I would hold sermons, do talks and get guest speakers," explained Barney.

"We would read out essays members of the congregation have submitted on their feelings about the Jedi and the Force: do meditation, relaxation and visualisation techniques and a bit of light-sabre training."

Watching the films as children gave the brothers a good understanding of the "faith," said Barney.

"We had a knowledge of the Force from that and the teachings of Yoda. We've read the teachings on the internet.

"Our father is a karate black belt, we used to train with him, which is where we got the martial arts."

Barney, who has watched the Star Wars films "multiple dozens of times," does not wear film-themed clothing in public, but he and his brother would do so at Jedi church meetings.

'Sense of unity'

He said: "My brother and I will wear the Jedi robes, the dark brown robes... the congregation would be in black. Really to bring a sense of unity to the meetings."

Although the current members are all men, women are not excluded, as Barney Jones points out: "Princess Leia helped them out a lot."

However, any congregation member drawn to the dark side of the Force, embodied in the film by Darth Vader, would be advised they are following the wrong path and could face expulsion.

Barney explained: "Obviously, if someone starts to try and use the good force for greed and power, they are going to bring negative interference into the meetings.

"We cannot have the Force disrupted by negative interference."

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News : Man Who Attacked Founder of Jedi Church Gets Suspended Sentence
Posted by admin on 1969/12/31 21:40:00 (1032 reads)

Man Who Attacked Founder of Jedi Church Gets Suspended Sentence

After a hearing on May 14, 27-year-old Arwel Hughes was sentenced to two months in jail (suspended), a light punishment for one who turned to the Dark Side. Hughes was arrested in March after he assaulted Barney and Michael Jones, two cousins who founded a chapter of the Jedi Church in Wales last year.

According to the article, in the 2001 UK census nearly 400,000 people listed "Jedi" as their religion.

YodaProsecutors told the Holyhead Magistrates' Court that Hughes, who is not a church member, attacked the two men in their front yard while they were engaged in a "light saber battle." Hughes, who was wielding a metal crutch and wearing a trash bag as a cape, hit one Jedi on the head and the other in the leg. He shouted "Darth Vader!" as he attacked.

In court on May 13, Hughes said he could not remember the incident because he was drunk at the time. According to the report, Hughes had "drunk the better part of a 2 1/2 gallon (10-liter) box of wine beforehand." That seems doubtful; the average yearly consumption of wine in Britain (for 2005) was about 27 liters -- maybe they try harder in Wales, but still I think that much wine "beforehand" might have been fatal. Dangerous it is to drink so much until finished your Jedi training you have.

Drunk and stupid is not a defense, at least in this country, but Hughes' lawyer ran with it. "[My client] knows his behavior was wrong and didn't want it to happen," she told the court, "but he has no recollection of it." (Apparently he blacked out just after realizing something was about to happen that he would regret later.) Luckily for Darth Hughes, no one was seriously injured, so he got away with a suspended sentence and about $500 in fines.

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