NEWLY ELECTED PRESIDENT OF THE MOTHER CHURCH, Richard Bergenheim, C.S.B., of New York City, knows firsthand—as Editor of The Christian Science Monitor—the pace and depth of change going on in the world of publishing. "In an age when so much is changing," Richard asks, "what is the unchangeable underlying nature—the bedrock purpose and mission—of each periodical that Mary Baker Eddy founded?" Richard will explore with church members the answer to that question in his one-year term as President, which became effective June 2, 2008.
Richard expects to meet with Christian Science practitioners and teachers during the summer months. Then, he will accept invitations from branch churches for meetings to broaden appreciation and support for the Church's periodicals. Those attending these meetings will explore how prayer and other means of active support can advance the Monitor, Journal, Sentinel, Herald, and Quarterly Bible Lessons in their service to the global human family. Richard's year as President coincides with events this fall marking the Monitor's first 100 years of publication.
As a college undergraduate, Richard spent summers working as a "copy kid" at the Monitor, as he says, "filling editors' paste pots"—one of those ancient memories in today's all-electronic newsrooms. After earning a master's degree from the Shakespeare Institute at University of Birmingham, England, Richard taught English for two years before pursuing his lifelong commitment to and love for the practice of prayer-based Christian healing. He first advertised in the Journal as a practitioner in 1974, and became a teacher of Christian Science in 1982. In the 1990s, Richard served as Editor in Chief of the periodicals, during a time when he was also a member of the Christian Science Board of Directors.