(PART 1) - The First Church of Christ, Scientist
Books by Mary Baker Eddy

THE ANNUAL MEETING, JUNE 12, 1906
page 573


from all parts of the world, many of whom have not had
the means of knowing the steps by which this church has
reached its present growth, to present in this report a few
of the stages of its progress, as gleaned from the pages of
its history.
   After a work has been established, has grown to great
magnitude, and people the world over have been touched
by its influence for good, it is with joy that those who have
labored unceasingly for the work look back to the picturesque,
interesting, and epoch-marking stages of its growth,
and recall memories of trials, progress, and victories that
are precious each and all.  To-day we look back over the
years that have passed since the inception of this great
Cause, and we cannot help being touched by each landmark
of progress that showed a forward effort into the
well-earned joy that is with us now.  For a Cause that
has rooted itself in so many distant lands, and inspired so
many of different races and tongues into the demonstration
of the knowledge of God, the years that have passed since
Mrs. Eddy founded her first church seem but a short
time.  And this little church, God's word in the wilderness
of dogma and creed, opened an era of Christian
worship founded on the commands of Jesus: "Go ye
into all the world, and preach the gospel to every
creature. . . .  And these signs shall follow them that
believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they
shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents;


MY 48


and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not
hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they
shall recover."
   Not until nineteen centuries had passed was there one
ready to receive the inspiration, to restore to human consciousness
the stone that had been rejected, and which
Mrs. Eddy made "the head of the corner" of The Church
of Christ, Scientist.
   With the reading of her textbook, "Science and
Health with Key to the Scriptures," Mrs. Eddy insisted
that her students make, every day, a prayerful study of
the Bible, and obtain the spiritual understanding of its
promises.  Upon this she founded the future growth of
her church, and twenty-six years later the following
splendid appreciation of her efforts appeared in the
Methodist Review from the pen of the late Frederick
Lawrence Knowles: -
   "Mrs. Eddy . . . in her insistence upon the constant
daily reading of the Bible and her own writings, . . .
has given to her disciples a means of spiritual development
which . . . will certainly build such truth as they do gain
into the marrow of their characters.  The scorn of the
gross and sensual, and the subordination of merely material
to spiritual values, together with the discouragement of
care and worry, are all forces that make for righteousness.
And they are burned indelibly upon the mind of the
neophyte every day through its reading.  The intellects
of these people are not drugged by scandal, drowned in
frivolity, or paralyzed by sentimental fiction. . . .  They
feed the higher nature through the mind, and I am bound
as an observer of them to say, in all fairness, that the
result is already manifest in their faces, their conversation,

MY 49


and their bearing, both in public and private.  What
wonder that when these smiling people say, 'Come thou
with us, and we will do thee good,' the hitherto half-persuaded
one is wholly drawn over, as by an irresistible
attraction.  The religious body which can direct, and control,
in no arbitrary sense, but through sane counsel, the
reading of its membership, stands a great chance of sweeping
the world within a generation."
   The charter of this little church was obtained August

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 (c) Copyright 1998 - Rolf Witzsche
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