Music & the Spoken Word: ‘Patches of Godlight’

Lloyd Newell shares about seeking for what C.S. Lewis called ‘patches of Godlight’

Editor’s note: “The Spoken Word” is shared by Lloyd Newell each Sunday during the weekly Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square broadcast. This was recorded at the The Kilns outside Oxford, England, in June 2022. This will be given Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022.

The Kilns

I’m standing in front of a home called The Kilns, located in Headington, just outside of Oxford, England. The home got its name from the fact that it was built on a brickworks site long ago. It’s a lovely house surrounded by beautiful gardens, but it would be unremarkable except for the fact that the beloved writer and Oxford University professor C.S. Lewis lived here for more than 30 years until his death in 1963. He wrote his most notable books here, including “The Chronicles of Narnia,” “The Screwtape Letters” and “Mere Christianity,” to name a few.

This charming spot recalls these words Lewis wrote: “Any patch of sunlight in a wood will show you something about the sun which you could never get from reading books on astronomy. These pure and spontaneous pleasures are ‘patches of Godlight’ in the woods of our experience” (see Lewis’ ”Letters to Malcolm: Chiefly on Prayer”).

As Lewis well knew, you can’t always predict when a patch of sunlight or a patch of “godlight” will shine into your life. But you can put yourself in a position to receive that light, because God, like the sun, is always there, whether or not we recognize Him.

C.S. Lewis’ writing desk at his home at The Kilns. | James Conlee

Lewis himself, for example, was an atheist in his early teens and through his 20s. But then his faith in Christianity was rekindled with the help of his close friend and fellow professor J.R.R. Tolkien. Lewis called himself a “most reluctant convert to faith,” (see “C.S. Lewis as Atheist Turned Apostle,” by David C. Downing, on, but once converted — once that patch of godlight arrived — he believed with his whole heart, mind and soul.

C.S. Lewis spent the rest of his days teaching about God and His love. “The great thing to remember,” he explained, “is that, though our feelings come and go, [God’s] love for us does not” (see “Mere Christianity”).

Holy Trinity Church

A memorial to C.S. Lewis sits in Poets’ Corner at Westminster Abbey in London, placed there on the 50th anniversary of Lewis’ death. His actual gravesite is just a few miles from The Kilns, here in the peaceful surroundings of Holy Trinity Church.

Inside the church are reminders of his life, including a plaque on the pew where he sat. But perhaps the most touching monument to C.S. Lewis’ life and faith is the “Narnia window,” a fitting reminder to do what he did: Seek for and find light — patches of godlight.

Holy Trinity Church in Headington, England. | James Conlee

Tuning in …

The “Music & the Spoken Word” broadcast is available on KSL-TV, KSL Radio 1160AM/102.7FM,, BYUtv, BYUradio, Dish and DirectTV, SiriusXM Radio (Ch. 143), the, and Amazon Alexa (must enable skill). The program is aired live on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. on many of these outlets. Look up broadcast information by state and city at

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