The C.S. Lewis Retreat Readers Track
“Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” Romans 12:2
In his book, The Great Divorce, C.S. Lewis takes the reader with him on a trip to the foothills of Heaven. His tour guide is George MacDonald, the 19th century Scottish author and minister. Lewis encounters ghosts from “the grey town” and observes their interactions with the shining Spirits sent to welcome and lead them to Heaven – that is, if each first chooses to surrender his or her Self, taking the first steps “further up and further in.”
By observing Lewis’s characters choosing between earthly temptations and eternal desires, we are moved to ponder our own struggles. Our choices in the here and now define not only who we are today, but also who we will become in the future and where we spend eternity. It is not simply a matter of making a single decision to follow God’s commands. To the contrary, it is a thousand daily choices – the oft tiny, repetitive choices of day to day belief and obedience. These choices sculpt and reflect the inclination of our souls and ultimately determine the presence of Heaven or Hell in our lifetimes on earth.
Our guide in this discovery is Professor Joseph Pearce, the widely esteemed author of biographies of literary giants including C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and G.K. Chesterton, who will help us see through the lens of Lewis’s unique experience as relayed in his fictional tale of a transformative bus ride to Heaven.
Come, open your heart and mind and grow as we together learn to choose the ways of Heaven in our everyday lives.
Joseph Pearce, Professor of Literature, Editor of St. Austin Review, author of books on writers including C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Oscar Wilde, G.K. Chesterton, and William Shakespeare.
Doug Jackson, Professor of Spiritual Formation and Pastoral Ministry for Logsdon Seminary at the South Texas School of Christian Studies in Corpus Christi, former Pastor of Second Baptist Church of Corpus Christi
Dr. Diana Pavlac Glyer, Professor of English and author of The Company They Keep: C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien as Writers in Community
Andrew Lazo, Scholar and speaker on the Inklings and Co-Editor of Mere Christians: Inspiring Stories of Encounters with C.S. Lewis
Steve Laube, Christian Literary Agent
Thomas Umstattd, President of Castle Media
More to be announced
- Three Plenary Lectures - Inspired by the themes of The Great Divorce
- Hosted Groups on event themes
- Worship – invocation, scripture meditation, Sunday service, and sermon
- Fellowship with speakers and fellow attendees
- Free time for contemplation
- Artistic performances in song and dance
- Bag End Café
EARLY ARRIVAL WORKSHOPS
Thursday Evening (informal activities for those staying at Camp Allen on Thursday night prior to the event)
- Bag End Café
Friday Workshops: Three separate session times with workshops focused on
- C.S. Lewis 101: His Life, Books, & Themes
- Tech 101: Social media
“Heaven is not a state of mind. Heaven is reality itself. All that is fully real is Heavenly. For all that can be shaken will be shaken and only the unshakable remains.”
– C.S. Lewis, The Great Divorce