National Conference 2013: Celebrating the Work of C.S. Lewis

National Conference 2013: Celebrating the Work of C.S. Lewis

Fifty years ago this fall, C.S. Lewis quietly crossed from this life into the next.

While the assassination of John F. Kennedy captured the world’s attention on November 22, 1963, one Clive Staples Lewis — his friends called him Jack — breathed his last and took one big step toward becoming the kind of glorious creature in the coming new creation he speaks about in his famous sermon “The Weight of Glory.”

It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you can talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare.

All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics.

There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilisations — these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit — immortal horrors or everlasting splendours.

This does not mean that we are to be perpetually solemn. We must play. But our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously.

Honoring the Romantic Rationalist

With great gratitude to God for his gift to us in one ordinary Jack, with some extraordinary talents and one remarkable corpus of work, we’re excited to announce the focus of our Desiring God 2013 National Conference: “The Romantic Rationalist: God, Life, and Imagination in the Work of C.S. Lewis.”

We’d love to have you save the date and join us in downtown Minneapolis, September 27–29. In addition to two plenary messages from John Piper, we’ve gathered a handful of verifiable Lewis-lovers for the main sessions: Randy Alcorn, Phil Ryken, Douglas Wilson, and Kevin Vanhoozer. Also included are breakout sessions from Lyle Dorsett, Colin Duriez, Joe Rigney, and N.D. Wilson, and a litany of 10-minute short monologues in the exhibit hall on a variety of themes related to Lewis. Our hope is this will be the next best thing to visiting Narnia yourself.

Early-Bird Rate

For the speaker’s titles, the conference schedule, and other information, see the event page, and consider taking advantage of the early-bird rate of $150 when you register by July 26.

More info to come in the days ahead. For now, we’d love to have you mark your cal, consider registering early, and check out this brief word from John Piper on why we’re so excited to rally around the work of C.S. Lewis for this conference.

All Daughters of Eve Welcome

Just to be clear, since there has been some confusion in the past, we welcome women at this event, and all our conferences. Our winter pastors conference is largely a men’s event, though women are welcome there as well. But in particular, our fall National Conference is designed for a general audience of men and women, old and young. Please join us!

Download our new ebook from John Piper, Alive to Wonder: Celebrating the Influence of C.S. Lewis

David Mathis (@davidcmathis) is executive editor at, pastor at Cities Church (Minneapolis), and adjunct professor for Bethlehem College & Seminary. He has edited several books, including Thinking. Loving. Doing., Finish the Mission, and Acting the Miracle, and is co-author of How to Stay Christian in Seminary.