CHAPTER VIII: Dedicatory Messsages to Branch Churches
The Puritans possessed the motive of true religion,
which, demonstrated on the Golden Rule, would have
solved ere this the problem of religious liberty and human
rights. It is "a consummation devoutly to be wished"
that all nations shall speedily learn and practise the
intermediate line of justice between the classes and masses
of mankind, and thus exemplify in all things the universal
equity of Christianity.
Thirty years ago (1866) Christian Science was discovered
in America. Within those years it is estimated that
Chicago has gained from a population of 238,000 to the
number of 1,650,000 inhabitants.
The statistics of mortality show that thirty years ago
the death-rate was at its maximum. Since that time it
has steadily decreased. It is authentically said that one
expositor of Daniel's dates fixed the year 1866 or 1867 for
the return of Christ - the return of the spiritual idea to
the material earth or antipode of heaven. It is a marked
coincidence that those dates were the first two years of
my discovery of Christian Science.
Thirty years ago Chicago had few Congregational
churches. To-day it is said to have a majority of these
churches over any other city in the United States. Thirty
years ago at my request I received from the Congregational
Church a letter of dismissal and recommendation
to evangelical churches - thenceforth to exemplify my
early love for this church and a membership of thirty
years by establishing a new-old church, the foundations
of which are the same, even Christ, Truth, as the chief
In 1884, I taught a class in Christian Science and
formed a Christian Scientist Association in Chicago.
From this small sowing of the seed of Truth, which, when
sown, seemed the least among seeds, sprang immortal
fruits through God's blessing and the faithful labor of
loyal students, - the healing of the sick, the reforming
of the sinner, and First Church of Christ, Scientist, with
its large membership and majestic cathedral.
Humbly, gratefully, trustingly, I dedicate this beautiful
house of worship to the God of Israel, the divine
Love that reigns above the shadow, that launched the
earth in its orbit, that created and governs the universe -
guarding, guiding, giving grace, health, and immortality
May the wanderer in the wilderness of mortal beliefs
and fears turn hither with satisfied hope. May the birds
of passage rest their weary wings amid the fair foliage of
this vine of His husbanding, find shelter from the storm
and a covert from the tempest. May this beloved
church adhere to its tenets, abound in the righteousness
of Love, honor the name of Christian Science, prove the
practicality of perfection, and press on to the infinite
uses of Christ's creed, namely, - "Thou shalt love the
Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul,
and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and
thy neighbor as thyself." Thus may First Church of
Christ, Scientist, in this great city of Chicago, verify what
John Robinson wrote in 1620 to our Pilgrim Fathers:
"When Christ reigns, and not till then, will the world
FIRST CHURCH OF CHRIST, SCIENTIST,
Beloved Brethren across the Sea: - To-day a nation is
born. Spiritual apprehension unfolds, transfigures, heals.
With you be there no more sea, no ebbing faith, no night.
Love be thy light upon the mountain of Israel. God
will multiply thee.
FIRST CHURCH OF CHRIST, SCIENTIST,
Beloved Brethren: - I rejoice with you; the day has