Brian Mountford: Writer, Publisher, and Speaker
Interested in the future of religion, progressive Christianity, and leadership values
This recording is of my sermon for the University Church, Oxford for Advent Sunday 2020, 29 November. Its theme is Hope and Fear starting from the Christian idea of the Second Coming of Christ.
The talk below, recorded in May this year, was for the St Hilda's College, Oxford weekly Chapel podcast.
My autobiographical book, 'Church Going Gone: a biography of religion, doubt, and faith', is finished and with the publisher.
'In this colourful memoir, from 1950’s childhood to the COVID crisis, Brian Mountford describes his life as a priest, which has spanned a period of immense social change and seen the secularisation of Britain to the point where 52% of the population say they have ‘no religion’. Opening with a vibrant account of London in the Sixties, he moves to Cambridge college life in the Seventies, Suburbia in the Eighties, and thirty years as Vicar of the ‘most visited parish church in England’, the University Church, Oxford. Rich in humour and anecdote, he unpacks his liberal theological ideas on the way, addressing questions such as God, the meaning of life, sexual ethics, and the relationship between doubt and faith. A central idea is that the abandonment of organised religion has not eradicated spiritual questioning and, following Philip Larkin’s poem Church Going, from which the book takes its title, people of all ages are forever ‘surprising/A hunger in (themselves) to be more serious.
Both the story and the essay content will fascinate many, many more people than actually go to church.'
I have also finished editing another new book, 'Religion and the Age of Majority - why seventy per cent of young people say they have no religion'. Essays by Oxford students on why 70% of their age group has 'no religion'. Subjects include: loss of certainty, culture shift, science, being brought up Muslim, feminism, Catholicism, music, the environment, and the future of religion. This gives a platform to voices not normally heard.
I am Publisher-at-Large for John Hunt Publishing's Christian Alternative imprint and looking for books that take a radical look at Christianity.
I'm also a public speaker on a range of subjects in the area of ethics, contemporary religion, and leadership, but especially on the 'problems of belief in a secular age'.
I give seminars on leadership. I'm an experienced conference facilitator covering liberal arts topics.
I am a Supernumerary Fellow of St Hilda's College, Oxford.
My books are best ordered from Amazon