Brian Mountford: Writer, Publisher, and Speaker
Interested in the future of religion, progressive Christianity, and leadership values
My memoir, 'Church Going Gone: a biography of religion, doubt, and faith' will be published in October 2021
'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 Generation Z - 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
New book accepted by John Hunt Publishing.
'Religion and Generation Z'
In 2017 NatCen’s British Social Attitudes survey published statistics that 53% of the people in Britain say they have ‘no religion’ and that of those 70% of the 18-24 age-group claim to have no religion. This collection of essays by Oxford graduate and undergraduate students attempts to say why. The essays are individual responses rather than a systematic examination of the question. Atheist, Agnostic, Irish, Catholic, Protestant, and Muslim views are represented.
The purpose was to explain a social trend but, in the process of writing, several of the contributors have, as if by chance, produced material which is richly meditative that can be read both for information and as spiritual reflection.
The Editor, Brian Mountford, is concerned that, within church and religious circles, the religious views of the young are often discussed by older clergy and writers but rarely heard first hand. This book is a partial remedy. Mountford has written opening and closing essays, introducing the topic and finally asking what future there is for religion.