• June 17-20, 2020 - Cullen, Scotland

    Phillips/MacDonald Gathering, 2020 Hosted by Michael and Judy Phillips

  • 2020 Focus

    For over thirty years, on and off, we have hosted “open house” type gatherings for friends and readers of Michael Phillips and George MacDonald books—both in our own and in the homes of others. It has provided a forum through fellowship and discussion to articulate the spiritual vision communicated through our books.


    The gatherings have also given us opportunity reaffirm the spiritual legacy of George MacDonald, which has been so intrinsic to our lives for over forty years. Because our personal perspective of MacDonald’s true legacy is increasingly at variance with many in the burgeoning academic and fantasy community of study and readership, we have felt it important to provide a forum for those who have been impacted by MacDonald’s sermons and novels in ways paralleling our own experience. As response to these gatherings has expanded, we have also outgrown our home, and for the past two years we have met in the clubhouse at the community in Folsom where we now live.

    Next year we will depart from what has been our pattern for several years. Instead we will be hosting the gathering in Cullen, Scotland, site of the Malcolm and Marquis of Lossie doublet and where several of our own “Phillips” books are set. Cullen and Scotland will now take center stage over the two featured authors!

    The dates are June 17-20, 2020.

    It’s not too soon to start saving and begin planning to join us in Cullen, for as much of an “open house” as our little cottage can manage, though the meetings will be held in the Cullen Community Centre. Good food, discussions, walks around Cullen with Malcolm in hand while following MacDonald’s footsteps when he visited the area, Cullen skink and oatcakes and fish and chips, and a hike up Castle Hill to sit on the MacDonald Memorial Bench, will all be part of the adventure. We are also hoping to arrange for a tour of Fyvie Castle, immortalized in Donal Grant. So stay tuned!

    Michael Phillips


    Michael Phillips is widely known as George MacDonald’s redactor, publisher, and biographer, whose vision and editorial expertise – building upon the forerunning work of C.S. Lewis, Elizabeth Yates, and Rolland Hein – helped bring MacDonald back from obscurity in the 1980s when his realistic novels had been nearly forgotten. Author and editor of over 100 books, Phillips’ efforts helped ignite the MacDonald renaissance of recent years. As one of those responsible for the widespread renewal of MacDonald’s influence, Phillips is recognized as among the world’s foremost purveyors of MacDonald’s message, with particular insight into the Scotsman’s heart and spiritual vision.

    George MacDonald


    Forerunner of the Inklings – Scottish minister, poet, novelist, and imaginative seer – MacDonald was one of the most beloved Victorian authors throughout of the 19th century. He wrote some 50 volumes of novels, poetry, short stories, fantasy, sermons, and essays. His influential body of work placed him alongside his era’s great men of letters and his following was vast. Two decades after his death, his books were pivotal in leading C.S. Lewis to Christianity.

  • Tentative Schedule

    (Daily Details to be Announced at a Later Date)


    Tuesday, June 16

    Optional Activities, and light, informal supper for early arrivals


    Wednesday, June 17

    First full day of sessions, excursions TBD


    Thursday, June 18

    Full day of sessions, excursions TBD


    Friday, June 19

    Full day of sessions, excursions TBD


    Saturday & Sunday, June 20-21

    Portsoy Boat Festival in neighboring town

  • "I feel a deep debt of gratitude to the Phillips for their work"

    - John K.

    "Not only did Michael Phillips' efforts introduce me to MacDonald but I have gained much through Michael’s own books as well..."

    - Michael K.

    "I was at Michael Phillips' small gathering of GM/C.S.Lewis fans many years ago at his cabin in the mountains. It was a fabulous and very blessed time with wonderful conversation and Scottish music and dancing!"

    - Sharon E.

    "Michael opened up my eyes to the wealth of MacDonald through his novels and sermons."

    - David G.

    "MacDonald is my husbands favorite author, and he has read Michael Phillips translations all his life."

    - Tina H.

    "It would be wonderful to meet with a group of people who appreciate George MacDonald as the Phillips do."

    - James H.

    "I've always admired Michael and Judy and their work."

    - Peg V.

    "Michael Phillips has definitely been instrumental in raising awareness about MacDonald, who for a long time really lingered in the margins of literature."

    - Jennifer K.

    "Michael and Judy have done so much to carry MacDonald's legacy forward. So grateful for that!"

    - Janet M.

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  • “To [many] theology must be like a map—with plenty

    of lines in it. They cannot trust their house on the high

    tableland of his theology because they cannot see the

    outlines bounding that tableland. It is not small enough

    for them. They cannot take it in. Such can hardly be

    satisfied with the creation, one would think, seeing there is

    no line of division anywhere in it…”

    “Does God draw no lines then?”

    “When he does, they are pure lines, without breadth,

    and consequently invisible to mortal eyes, not walls of

    separation such as these definers would construct…”

    —David Elginbrod, “A Sunday With Falconer”