Dear Church Members and Friends,
We can’t wait to be together with you on June 5, 2023, at 1 p.m. Boston time, for the Annual Meeting of The Mother Church! There is much to be grateful for.
It’s quite remarkable to walk down the hall on any floor of the Publishing House, the building that houses all of us in the Boston area who work here, and think for a moment of the sincere and Love-generated devotion that you see and feel everywhere—working together, well-seasoned or brand-new, in support of our Church. It’s impossible not to smile at each encounter.
Where did these wonderful folks come from? From everywhere. From you, the members of The Mother Church worldwide. It’s you who have given witness and support to the development of all who are present. Each one here has been led by Love to join the Christian Science movement in a practical way, and most have come from somewhere other than Boston—Democratic Republic of Congo, Australia, Philippines, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, France, Indonesia, Russia, Brazil, Peru, and on and on. Somehow they have arrived at this place to serve the members of this Church and the whole human family.
But many more are still in the Field contributing through remote work, writing articles and testimonies, serving branches in their community, perhaps training to meet Christian Science nursing needs, or putting their trust in God and entering into public practice and teaching. Our hearts overflow as we think on this. We trust that when a group of Christian Science thinkers come together and turn to God for answers anywhere in the world, a flame is kindling. We know the “tender word and Christian encouragement” of others is better than repetition of doctrine and stereotypical talk, which demean what’s real and true about Science, “aflame with divine Love” (Mary Baker Eddy, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 367). No one on earth would decline the enduring love that heals and restores, if truly understood and experienced.
But what really brings us all together—the unifying and emboldening factor—is praying from the same standpoint, turning to the same Pastor for guidance. We can’t know a life divided from Church or each other when faithfully following the Science of Christ, the words and works of the master Christian and the discovery of this Science given to us by Mary Baker Eddy.
In recent years the public tenor has had a noticeable level of fear, and that has not yet been completely removed from world thought. But there isn’t an individual receiving this letter who hasn’t in some way been leaning on their best understanding of Christian Science through Scripture, our Leader’s writings, and publications from The Christian Science Publishing Society to lift this cloud. The effect has been that the work of this Church, in its largest sense, while tested, is undeterred.
At Annual Meeting, you will hear that such progress has not stopped. If anything, the challenges of the day have been uniting all of us as we dig deeper into the core of the discovery of the Science of the Christ and its promises. This will be the focus of Annual Meeting 2023 as we explore together in these next months “The discovery today—where hearts catch fire.” Mrs. Eddy's discovery of this Science cannot be redone or improved upon. It is complete. But our deepening understanding of it always needs mental refreshing, and our proofs of spiritual growth and the shedding of material bonds must be lived.
Speaking of her discovery, Mary Baker Eddy shares this:
The divine hand led me into a new world of light and Life, a fresh universe—old to God, but new to His “little one.” It became evident that the divine Mind alone must answer, and be found as the Life, or Principle, of all being; and that one must acquaint himself with God, if he would be at peace. He must be ours practically, guiding our every thought and action; else we cannot understand the omnipresence of good sufficiently to demonstrate, even in part, the Science of the perfect Mind and divine healing.
I had learned that thought must be spiritualized, in order to apprehend Spirit. It must become honest, unselfish, and pure, in order to have the least understanding of God in divine Science. The first must become last. Our reliance upon material things must be transferred to a perception of and dependence on spiritual things. For Spirit to be supreme in demonstration, it must be supreme in our affections, and we must be clad with divine power. Purity, self-renunciation, faith, and understanding must reduce all things real to their own mental denomination, Mind, which divides, subdivides, increases, diminishes, constitutes, and sustains, according to the law of God.
—Mary Baker Eddy, Retrospection and Introspection, pp. 27–28
This is good food for thought in preparation for our coming together. As in the recent past, we would love for those who can to join us in person in Boston. For those who can’t, the Annual Meeting team is planning an online opportunity to join. The meeting will be offered in simultaneous interpretation in French, German, Spanish, and Portuguese. We are considering other experiences we can share on Saturday and Sunday of Annual Meeting weekend as well. More to come on that. Please see christianscience.com/annualmeeting for details as they develop. As always, if you have your own “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.
With much gratitude for each of you,
The Christian Science Board of Directors
Rich Evans Barbara Fife Scott Preller Mary Alice Rose Keith Wommack