TO GENIA GOElZ, who had decided to be baptized an Episcopalian: On the joys and distresses of being an adult convert.
29 February 1952
Dear Mrs. Goelz (or may I, being old, and bold, and avuncular, say dear Genia?
I learn from Mrs. Van Deusen that you are ‘taking the plunge’. As you have been now for so long in my prayers, I hope it will not seem intrusive to send my congratulations. Or I might say condolences and congratulations. For whatever people who have never undergone an adult conversion may say, it is a process not without its distresses. Indeed, they are the very sign that it is a true initiation. Like learning to swim or to skate, or getting married, or taking up a profession. There are cold shudderings about all these processes. When one finds oneself learning to fly without trouble one soon discovers (usually. There are blessed exceptions where we are allowed to take a real step without that difficulty), by waking up, that it was only a dream.
All blessings and good wishes.
The Collected Letters of C. S. Lewis, Volume III: Narnia, Cambridge, and Joy 1950-1963. Copyright © 2007 by C. S. Lewis Pte. Ltd. All rights reserved. Used with permission of HarperCollins Publishers. Yours, Jack: Spiritual Direction from C. S. Lewis. Copyright © 2008 by C. S. Lewis Pte. Ltd. All rights reserved. Used with permission of HarperCollins Publishers.