A Letter Found to the West of the Sanctuary on the Stairs Leading up to the Senior High Room

Dear Subdevil Wormwood,

We are not impressed at headquarters with your service at Bethlehem. Of course, there are some wonderfully dark spots, but that is hardly to your credit. By and large you have failed to squash this disgusting Christian Hedonism. It is positively revolting to see six hundred potential slaves of ours adoring the Enemy the way they do on that most oppressive of all days—Sunday. This has got to stop, or you will be transferred to some unchallenging liberal church where there is less opposition.

Evidently you need a lesson in the basics, dear Wormwood. What was your first lesson in low school? This: extended, concentrated enemy prayer must be undermined at all costs! That is the abecedarian task of every devil from yourself down to His Majesty in the Lowest. Every devil cuts his military teeth on the basic manual of prayer obstruction. Have you forgotten your ABC’s?

Here is what you have to do. These two dogged prayer nuts who go up to the senior high room and plead with the Enemy to work while this Piper makes a fool of himself in the pulpit—these two must be stopped! You would tremble if you knew how many of our Most Low Master’s flaming darts have been deflected by the prayers of those two stubborn opponents. But, for evil’s sake, don’t let that get out! You have at least succeeded in making most of the people think it is a waste of time to pray during the morning worship services.

Whatever you do, don’t let this letter get into the hands of Christians at Bethlehem. If they discover how much havoc two stubborn people can wreak for Hell’s cause at 8:30 and 11:00 a.m. Sunday morning, our cause might be totally lost. I shudder to think what would become of us and our few captives there if people started to join this Barb and this Mike to pray. Satan help us if deacons and deaconesses and couples and singles and families start going up during worship to pray! Wormwood, I only need to remind you that the preaching of the Word of the Enemy is like dynamite. If you let it get lit by increased pray-ers on Sunday morning, your fate will be worse than Legion’s. Keep the option totally secret. If it leaks out, make it look tiresome, futile, impractical, embarrassing, awkward, unfit for parents and families. Don’t let them know they can hear the service over a speaker. Keep them enslaved to fear of what it will be like. I wouldn’t recommend stirring up any outright opposition. Just let it die. Then we will have this wretched worship quite under control.

But this Barb and Mike have got to go. Can’t you think of anything more than making them go it alone? I suggest you attack their commitment indirectly. How about some health problems or housing or finances or relationships or employment? I warn you, if you don’t find their weakness, you will be out to liberal-ville. They are a deadly squad. If they hold out, some of those new-born Christian Hedonists are going to discover their secret. Then what, dear Wormwood? Enough said. Now burn this letter, my most obedient subdevil.

For the sake of Satan,

Screwtape

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