The Gospels, C.S. Lewis, and Philosophical Theology: Celebrating Austin Farrer (1904-1968) after 50 Years

Austin Farrer (1904-1968) served as Warden of Keble College (1960-1968) at the culmination of a long and distinguished Oxford career that had successively seen him linked with Balliol as an undergraduate, Cuddesdon as an ordinand, St Edmund Hall as a Chaplain and Tutor (1931-1935), and Trinity College as a Fellow and Chaplain (1935-1960).

Aside from his service to Keble and other colleges, Farrer was a distinguished scholar, making lasting contributions to philosophy, Christian theology, and biblical studies. In New Testament circles, Farrer is best remembered for challenging the prevailing theory of a lost sayings source (“Q”) behind the Gospels, and for offering an elegant alternative account for the literary origins of the Synoptics. Farrer is also remembered as a remarkable preacher and close friend of C.S. Lewis.

To mark the 50th anniversary of his death on 29 December 2018, several members of Keble College and the Faculty of Theology and Religion are organizing a half-day conference. After a brief introduction to Farrer and his work as Warden, four main conference speakers will each highlight one of the major facets of Farrer’s legacy in the Academy and the Church.

Date: 18 January 2019, 2PM – 6PM (followed by Evensong in Keble College Chapel)

Venue: Roy Griffiths Room, Keble College, Oxford

Attendance is free but registration is required here.

Conference Programme

14:00 Welcome (Sir Jonathan Phillips, Warden of Keble)

14:10 Austin Farrer as Warden of Keble, 1960-1968 (Prof. Ian Archer, Oxford)

14:30 Farrer and New Testament Studies (Prof. Mark Goodacre, Duke)

15:15 Farrer and C.S. Lewis (Prof. Judith Wolfe, St. Andrews)

16:00 Tea

16:30 Farrer on the Problem of Evil (Dr. Michael Lloyd, Oxford)

17:15 Farrer the Preacher (Prof. John Barton, Oxford)

18:00 Close

18:30 Evensong in Keble Chapel (Preacher: Bishop Stephen Platten)

For enquiries, email us at