Sir John & Dr. Jack Templeton


By Ted Baehr

Everyone invests. Some invest in property, stocks and bonds. Some invest in creating a business. Everyone invests his or her time. You “invest” in your children. You “invest” in a home.

The world would be a much better place if everyone learned to invest from Sir John Templeton and his son Dr. John Templeton Jr. (“Jack”). They made a great deal of money investing in businesses with integrity. More than that, they invested their earnings in promoting integrity.

The John Templeton Foundation has been the sponsor of the Movieguide® Epiphany Prizes from their inception. In fact, the very idea was that of Sir John Templeton. He wanted to invest in encouraging those who make uplifting entertainment. John’s son Jack started the Kairos and Chronos prizes for uplifting screenplays. These investments have had tremendous return. More and more uplifting movies and television programs are being made, including some made from Kairos Prize winning scripts.

Their vision has inspired the gratitude of many opinion leaders in the entertainment industry, not just the winners of these generous prizes.

On Saturday, May 16, 2015 Dr. “Jack” Templeton went home to God’s Glory. He will be greatly missed as a friend and mentor, but his investments in promoting sound moral values will continue to pay tremendous dividends. Epiphany Prize winners continue making uplifting movies. Kairos Prize winners are growing as filmmakers. Chronos Prize winners are making movies even now. Even scriptwriters and filmmakers who only entered contests or received nominations are encouraged.

I cannot stress enough that, even though Dr. Jack has moved on to a better place, the work he set his heart to accomplish continues. What Sir John and Dr. Jack both wanted to share with the world was how to invest in a better world. Their example lives on as a legacy, but let’s look at some of the principles that guided their investment, including their investment in the Annual MOVIEGUIDE(r) Faith & Values Awards Gala & Report to the Entertainment Industry.

The Templeton Press offers a book titled THE TEMPLETON PLAN:  21 STEPS TO PERSONAL SUCCESS AND HAPPINESS. Step one is “Learning the laws of life.” These laws include “truthfulness, reliability, faithfulness, perseverance, enthusiasm, energy, humility, pleasing others, giving, learning from others, joy and altruism.”

Sir John and Dr. Jack Templeton modeled these values. Through years of work and struggle to host the Movieguide® Awards, we saw Sir John and Dr. Jack Templeton maintain their faithfulness, perseverance, humility, and generosity. Dr. Jack Templeton came to many Movieguide® Galas to give out prizes, but he was the kind of man who would offer to help as well with simple chores. Always gracious, his heart was in serving others.

The Templetons’ other steps toward success and happiness include such things as, “Use what you have,” “help yourself by helping others,” “find the positive,” “maximize the power of faith,” “receive strength through prayer,” “win through humility,” and finally “seek solutions.”

Sir John and Dr. Jack Templeton saw America as being in deep trouble. They saw people failing to succeed in a land of tremendous opportunity. They saw people unnecessarily unhappy. They were deeply concerned about moral decline and the growing national debt. Living by the principles they espoused, they sought solutions. The Movieguide® Awards is one of the solutions they dearly loved. Jack truly enjoyed giving prizes to movies and television programs that help promote the values he saw as vital for the success and happiness of others, and the people who won those awards were extremely grateful. In fact, we can say with the utmost confidence that Hollywood has truly embraced the Epiphany, Kairos and Chronos Prizes.

Both Sir John and Dr. Jack had a vision of America as a place where integrity and hard work offer success and happiness. They sought to invest in bringing that success and happiness to others. They understood very well that the greatest investments are not for short-term results, but for long-term benefits.

The Movieguide® Awards are a profound example of their commitment. The first Movieguide® Awards did not result in astounding change. Neither did the second, but after 23 Annual Movieguide® Awards and the steady support of the Templeton Foundation, the percentage of movies with moral, spiritually uplifting and/or redemptive content has risen from 12 percent to 73 percent. Movies like THE BLIND SIDE, LES MISÉRABLES and GOD’S NOT DEAD are winning the Epiphany Prize. THE BIBLE and A.D. are on television. More are on the way!

I cannot give enough thanks that God put together Sir John and Dr. Jack Templeton with Movieguide®. I pray that the entertainment industry will continue to make more and more movies and programs that promote the values Sir John and Dr. Jack modeled in their lives. These two visionaries understood the power of movies and sought to see that power used for good.

The impact of the mass media on children and grandchildren is quite striking. It cannot be refuted. With the support of the John Templeton Foundation, Movieguide® has been able to light thousands of candles in the entertainment industry and change Hollywood for the benefit of future generations.


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