C.S. Lewis Breaks Down During Sermon

theweightofgloryToday, as many of you probably know, is the 75th anniversary of C.S. Lewis’s delivering his most famous sermon, “The Weight of Glory.”  Though the following is NOT about that sermon, it is quite revealing and quite moving.

Ascetic Mr C.S. Lewis, Magdalen’s English Literature tutor and author of ‘The Screwtape Letters,” is becoming ever more of a power in Oxford.  Though a layman he often occupies one or other of the pulpits in the University.  An elderly Oxford don remarked to me the other day that there has been no preacher with Mr. Lewis’s influence since Newman.  He more than fills the University church of St. Mary’s.  Preaching on a recent Sunday morning in Mansfield College to a congregation in which there were many senior members of the University, including the Warden of All Souls, he made a deep impression.  In the middle of the sermon, Mr. Lewis, under stress of emotion, stopped, saying, ‘I’m sorry,’ and left the pulpit.  Dr. Micklem, the Principal and Chaplain went to his assistance.  After a hymn had been sung, Mr. Lewis returned and finished his sermon, which was about the Ascension, on a deeply moving note.  It was, I am assured, an extraordinary experience for his hearers.  There is much speculation in the University about his future.  Many think that his deep spiritual powers may put him at the head of a new Oxford Movement.  At one time, Mr. Lewis, as he has confessed, was an atheist.

–“Oxford’s Modern Newman,” LONDON DAILY TELEGRAPH (June 2, 1944).

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