Brian D. McLaren (born 1956) is an American pastor, author, speaker, and leading figure in the emerging church movement. McLaren is also associated with postmodern Christianity.
McLaren founded Cedar Ridge Community Church in Spencerville, Maryland, in 1982 while he was teaching English on the college level. In 1986, he became a full-time pastor. The church eventually grew to include 500 members. In 2015, McLaren was recognized by Time magazine as one of the 25 Most Influential Evangelicals in America. McLaren left his position at Cedar Ridge in 2006 to pursue writing and speaking full time.
In 2011, McLaren defended Rob Bell's controversial book Love Wins against critiques from figures such as Albert Mohler, who argued that Bell advocated universalism.
In 2013, McLaren stated that he did not believe homosexual conduct to be sinful.
McLaren is married and has four children. He has traveled extensively in Europe, Latin America, and Africa, and his personal interests include ecology, fishing, hiking, kayaking, camping, songwriting, music, art, and literature. In September 2012, McLaren led a commitment ceremony for his son Trevor and partner Owen Ryan at the Audubon Naturalist Society in Chevy Chase, Maryland.