Dr Lempert’s talk, ‘What is Lost’, at the latest YouCaxton Literary Lecture in the Pengwern Bookshop, Shrewsbury, was full to capacity last night. Those who attended heard Dr Lempert’s articulate and passionate description of the effect of religious belief on medical practice in the modern world. (Dr Lempert is Chair of the Secular Medical Forum.) His talk touched on religious fundamentalism in countries such as Pakistan and Israel as well as nearer home in Britain and Europe. It looked at how medical interventions based on custom and belief rather than medical necessity, such as circumcision both male and female, have been sanctioned or tacitly tolerated due to pressure from religious authorities. His description of legal threats and of the machinations of multinational bodies was rivetting.