News by email Donate


Top Stories

Most Read

Popular Videos

UK News

Life of Brian screening causes upset for church

by Hannah Tooley

In order to raise funds for the church, Fr Christopher Wilson charged people £10 to watch the Monty Python film.

The Parish Church in Leamington Spa will also stage a concert called "Music You Don't Normally Hear On A Church Organ" in a bid to raise funds for repairs.

The Life of Brian was branded as anti-Christian when it was first released in 1979 but Fr Wilson said it is trying to make the church "laugh at ourselves."

He told The Telegraph: "Just as church buildings were the centre of all sorts of community activities in medieval times, we hope the film will bring in people who wouldn't normally think of entering this spectacular place.

"The Life of Brian caused upset when it was released almost 40 years ago. Most of us have grown up since then.

"We've learned to laugh at ourselves and to understand the difference between faith, which inspires us from deep within, and the foibles of human nature which are so humorously depicted in the film."

He added that he hopes people will come and enjoy the evening and that they feel encouraged to engage with the Bible and ask questions afterwards.

Some members of his congregation have criticised the decision to hold the screening, though.

An unnamed congregation member said: "I remember the furore the first time the film came out and I watched it out of interest to see what the fuss was about.

"As a Christian, I didn't particularly like it very much and thought it was an unfair portrayal of the church but accepted it should be shown in cinemas.

"My views haven't changed in the intervening years but I don't agree it should be shown in church. I think it will upset many, many people."

John Ascott, 45, said: "I support freedom of speech and people's rights to view certain films, but why not screen it in a cinema?

"There must be better ways to encourage people to attend church than to show a film which is, in essence, making fun of the entire Christian faith and story of Jesus."

Half of the profits from ticket sales will go towards the continued upkeep and repairs for 174-year-old church.

A Monthly Gift Of $11 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the USA is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of $11 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Support Us
Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

News by email