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Serving in a Christian Science Reading Room

From the June 1968 issue of The Christian Science Journal

"In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength," Isa. 30:15; Isaiah tells us. Christ Jesus knew the value of quietness, for he often went to a peaceful place alone to commune with God.

A Christian Science Reading Room provides a quiet, orderly sanctuary for study and prayer. It is also a unique missionary center, making Christian Science available to all. It provides a place where Mrs. Eddy's great discovery may be shared impersonally with others. Through window displays of the Bible and of Mrs. Eddy's writings, together with other authorized literature, it invites all to come in and learn about Christian Science.

The Manual of The Mother Church by Mrs. Eddy requires that each branch Church of Christ, Scientist, shall have a Reading Room. So it is essential for branch church members to support their Reading Room by their prayers and their presence. The Reading Room is a part of their church.

The church member who makes a practice of regularly visiting his branch church Reading Room and using its facilities is rewarded in individual illumination, understanding, and spiritualization of thought. Our Reading Rooms are havens where one may be still and know man's oneness with God, dwelling upon true, healing thoughts that not only bless oneself but the whole world. One's prayerful work may include rising above sense testimony to behold the God-inspired nature of Reading Room activity to meet the spiritual needs of mankind. Such prayers and genuine love reaching out to bless mankind will be felt, and those hungry and searching for Truth will be drawn to our Reading Rooms to receive the inspiration, peace, or healing they need.

Our Master, Christ Jesus, said,"I am among you as he that serveth." Luke 22:27; Jesus' loving service to his fellowmen was always humble and unselfish. These qualities should characterize the services of Christian Science Reading Room attendants.

The librarian is one who, following the example of the Way-shower, serves those who are seeking spiritual food. He instantly makes all feel welcome, whether they are strangers or church members. He is alert to recognize newcomers and to present Christian Science lovingly to them in just the way they can understand. This takes prayerful discernment. All who are led to a Reading Room are reaching out for the truth whether they know it or not, for the influence of the Christ is always present to attract human consciousness.

The more material seems the thought of those who come into the Reading Room, the more they need to feel the elevating, purifying effect of Christian Science. They will respond to the helpful attitude of the librarian. It is important, then, for the librarian to keep his thoughts on a high, spiritual level and let the healing power of Truth shine forth to bless everyone who enters. He may realize that because God is present divine Love is there, and because the law of divine Love is in operation, healing is taking place. The healing atmosphere of the Reading Room supports everyone who uses it; and many feel burdens of care, fear, worry, materiality, drop away when they are there.

The librarian should be "instant in season, out of season," II Tim. 4:2; in his every thought regarding the Reading Room. He should be prompt in reversing any error that might try to invade the harmony of the rooms, whether it is visible or invisible, whether it appears as person or thought. As we prayerfully place the Reading Room and everyone in it in God's hands, no disturbing, disrupting claim of mortal mind can prevail.

In her article "Ways that are Vain" in The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany, Mrs. Eddy tells us, "The malicious aim of perverted mind-power, or animal magnetism, is to paralyze good and give activity to evil." My., p. 213. We must handle the claims of animal magnetism in our daily metaphysical work for our Reading Rooms. One way to render the malicious mental argument powerless is to know the omnipotence and omnipresence of God, divine Mind, and that there is no other mind or power.

Christian Scientists whose thoughts are imbued with love, spiritual inspiration, peace, and a desire to serve our great Cause by supporting the Reading Room are proving that they are indeed servants of God. Consecrated metaphysical work for the Reading Room is not limited or confined to one place but reaches out and goes forth from one heart to another. The earthbound thought is waking to Christ's presence, seeking that which will elevate it and loose the chains of materiality. Christian Science Reading Rooms play an important part in fulfilling this need.

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