August 1954-1955
August 1954-1955 E-mail

Yours, Jack

(pg. 245-280)

The first set of general questions will apply to each of the readings we do in Yours, Jack

They are followed by questions specific to the letters in our selection for the evening. 

General Questions

1.  What do you observe from these letters about Jack's heart? mind? soul?

2.  What did you learn about Jack's relationship with others? with God?

3.  What insight, if any, can you apply to your life?

4.  What is your favorite expression or passage or piece of advice?

Specific Questions

5.  What advice does Lewis give on how to be a Christian writer?  (See page 246.)

6.  What do you think of Lewis's advice (p. 265-66) regarding a 9-year-old boy who was worried he loved Aslan more than Jesus? 

7.  Lewis writes several letters to Sheldon Vanauken in the wake of his wife's death.  See pages 263-64 and 267-68.  Lewis uses the term "a severe mercy" on page 268.  What does he mean by it?  Note: Vanuaken would later use the phrase as the title of his autobiography. 

8.  Lewis gives his view of scripture in response to readers' questions.  See page 269 and pages 273-74.  How would you characterize his position?  How do you view scripture?


patria (p. 250): fatherland; in this context referring to heaven

"Barbet's book on the Holy Shroud" (p. 262):  refers to Pierre Barbet, MD, a Parisian surgeon who wrote a book called A Doctor at Calvary: The Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ as Described by a Surgeon, in which he attempts to give a medical account of the crucifixion

the Wandering Jew (p. 276):  refers to a folklore figure that allegedly taunted Christ on the way to the cross and his punishment was to wander the earth until Christ's Second Coming

Mary Margaret McCaslin (1913-1980):  a native of Mississippi who had to drop out of college during her senior year because of the Depression and begin teaching.  After her husband died in 1953, she returned to university and became a speech therapist.  She wrote to Lewis on the first anniversary of her husband's accidental death, the "terrible calamity" to which Jack refers.  She was a Bible teacher and Sunday school teacher for many years and corresponded with Lewis from the 1950s to 60s. 

Walter Hooper (1931-  ):  North Carolina native who began writing Lewis while in the US Army during the mid-1950s.  He taught at Chapel Hill Elementary School while attending graduate school at UNC-CH, and later taught at the University of Kentucky.  Hooper finally met Lewis in June 1963 and worked as his secretary that summer.  After Jack's death in Nov. 1963, Warren Lewis invited Hooper to sort through and edit Jack's literary remains, a task which continues until this day.  Hooper recently completed the three-volume Collected Letters of C. S. Lewis.  He is currently assembling the many book reviews Lewis wrote during his academic career.

Jill Flewett Freud (1927-  ):  one of the London evacuees who came to live at the Kilns during WWII when she was 16 yrs. old.  After the war, Jill studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.  In 1950, she married Sigmund Freud's grandson Clement Freud, who later became a Member of Parliament.  Both Lewis brothers enjoyed Jill's company and continued to maintain contact with her over the years.  She was scheduled to have dinner at the Kilns on Nov. 22, 1963.  She telephoned 30 minutes after Jack died and received the news from Warnie.  In an interview, Jill recalled, "Lewis was the first person who made me believe I was an intelligent human being and the whole time I was there he built up my confidence in my ability to think and understand." (Quote comes from The C. S. Lewis Readers' Encyclopedia, p. 175).

Fr. Peter Milward, SJ (1925-  ):  a Jesuit priest who studied classics and English at Oxford. Although he didn't have Lewis as a tutor, he attended all his lectures while a student.  In 1954, when Milward moved to Tokyo for an appointment at Sophia University, he began a correspondence with Lewis that lasted until the latter's death.  Milward is the author of many books on English literature.

© 2008 by Allyson Wieland