Unexpected faces

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Jesus of Asparagus

“I’ve heard about Mother Teresa’s face being seen in a bagel, but I thought this was much better.”
Martin Gregory, Belvedere, London

 From little roots?

Martin Gregory, from Belvedere in south-east London, was doing a spot of gardening one Sunday in 2006 when he turned his attention to a potted asparagus fern. The plant was 10 years old, and Mr Gregory wanted to re-pot it, as he thought it was dying.

But when he pulled the plant from its pot and laid it on the grass, he had a surprise. “I thought, good gracious! It’s the face of Jesus!”

“It’s the most weird thing I have ever seen,” he said. “The roots are fantastic. You can actually make out a thorn crown around his head, his eyes and nose. I’ve heard about Mother Teresa’s face being seen in a bagel but I thought this was much better.”

The face in the roots of the plant seems to have been caused by stones in the pot, which pressed the roots into shape.

When asked how the discovery had affected him, Mr Gregory replied: “It has not made me religious. But it could be something supernatural linked to the abbey ruins opposite. We don’t know what’s in the ground.”

The local priest, Father David Sherratt, commented: “I have often heard of people seeing things. God may want Mr Gregory to interpret what he saw in the plant as a sign.”

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About this module

Have you ever unexpectedly seen a picture in the shapes made by clouds, or a face in a pattern of dots? Some people have been taken by surprise by glimpsing the face of Jesus in wood grain, or a snowy field, or shadows.

In these pages we’re looking at some of these strange pictures and the stories behind them. Click and explore among the images on the left. If you know any other pictures or stories, email to let us know via the contact page.

Compiled and written by Simon Jenkins.

Categories: Creativity, Art & image,


Module contents

arrow Unexpected gallery

arrow Jesus of Asparagus

arrow Jesus in tree bark

arrow Clouds form a crucifixion

arrow Jesus in a star cluster

arrow Jesus in a fence shadow

arrow Jesus in snow patterns

arrow Jesus in woodgrain

arrow Jesus in the clouds

arrow Jesus on cloth

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