from the CHRISTIAN SCIENCE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
An invitation to the 2020 Annual Meeting
of The First Church of Christ, Scientist
Theme: Our duty to God, to our Leader, and to mankind
I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.
It shall be the duty of every member of this Church to defend himself daily against aggressive mental suggestion, and not be made to forget nor to neglect his duty to God, to his Leader, and to mankind.
—Mary Baker Eddy
Manual of The Mother Church, Article VIII, Sect. 6
Dear Church family,
Last year, the Board of Directors received a letter from a longtime Church member expressing appreciation for The Mother Church. Especially touching in this particular note was that the gratitude this woman felt for being a member of The Mother Church was only surpassed by the very obvious joy she gained from serving and fulfilling what she saw as her own duty to church. By the time we gather for this year’s Annual Meeting on Monday, June 8, 2020, this dear woman will have completed 75 years of membership. She pointed out that she is still active in her branch church and still subscribes to the periodicals. She wrote, “All the good in my experience has been because of my study of the Bible and Science and Health.” And she concluded her letter with a line we can all relate to: “I am still learning every day.”
As truly grateful as we are for such examples of deep rootedness in our Church, we also have been so happy to note some areas of fresh new growth, just budding and blossoming. We think, for example, of a Summit for young professionals held at The Mother Church last year. We got to meet with so many individuals who were sharing how the words of Christian Science and what it means to contribute to Church were taking on a whole new vitality. Also, when the Board of Directors traveled to meet with members in Mexico and South America this past year, we were deeply encouraged to be with members who were measuring their church not by the size of its congregation but by the size of the love they were demonstrating within that congregation.
Undoubtedly, we all have our own story to tell about why we joined The Mother Church. Whether that story is one of experiencing the natural progression of attending Sunday School or church services and then feeling a hunger to be part of something that is bringing the healing message of scientific Christianity to the world. Or perhaps it is one of finding Christian Science through the life-example of a friend. Or reading Science and Health and experiencing significant healing. Our individual experiences add up to one common thread of seeing something of the joy that dedicating ourselves to the Cause of Christian Science can bring to our own lives and to the lives of others.
When each of us signed our application for membership, whether we did it this year or many years ago, we agreed to enter into “full fellowship with the Tenets and Rules of The First Church of Christ, Scientist” (Manual, p. 114). It’s pretty clear from those Tenets that Christian Science is not the sort of religion that allows us to sit around waiting for others to move it forward. We are all needed. That’s why Mrs. Eddy speaks of Christian Science as a movement, a Cause, a Science that requires proof, and as that which is actively reforming how Christians think about God.
As Christian Scientists, haven’t we all had those moments, in quiet study and prayer, when the actuality of God comes to light and the weight of the world just melts away? Don’t we rejoice when a healing makes us find new energy in realizing Mrs. Eddy’s discovery is much more than just a religious teaching? It is the discovery that frees humanity from the enslaving sense of being dominated by matter. And what hope this brings when our hearts begin to truly think about new ways to share this Comforter with those in our communities and our world through working together in church. That’s why we feel this year’s Annual Meeting is a wonderful opportunity to deepen our relationship with God, with our Leader, and with humanity.
Whether we’re just getting grounded in Christian Science, or perhaps struggling with a sense of doubt or routine after many years of membership, or devoting our full time to the public healing ministry of Christian Science, this is a good time to be exploring together the significance of our relationship to our Church. We also look forward to receiving and hearing reports from you about what you’re learning. We want to hear what’s real and what’s making a genuine difference in your lives as members. If you have a “report from the Field” to share, please be in touch with the Clerk of The Mother Church at email@example.com or by calling 617-450-3481 or 800-288-7155.
See you in June!
With much gratitude for each of you,
THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE BOARD OF DIRECTORS