Topic letter 2018
We've come together for a number of years now on Association day Saturdays in the Spring, and given our attention to many topics. Most recently, for example, we've asked how much can we know of Christian Science?, discussed our transparency to Spirit, asked what grace really means to us, and why should we think anything is too impossible or incredible for Christian Science healing?, and thought about our illimitable Life.
This year, however, our aim is a little different. It is to face up to one of the most urgent needs for us individually and as a movement. We're going to think and pray and honestly consider together how much we are practicing Christian Science from the standpoint Mrs. Eddy knew would be needed as the decades moved on. We're going to be asking ourselves the question, What's your view of Christian Science?
That may seem like an odd question, since most of us in this Association aren't new to Christian Science. So what is our view? Is it that we're committed to Christian Science, that it's good, we're grateful for it, sometimes inspired by it, that we probably need to work harder and more consistently at being a Christian Scientist?
Well, all that's true enough; it's honest. But it's just not the view of reality that the Science of Christ is actually providing for us and that Mary Baker Eddy expected those who became Christian Scientists to learn of and to be healed and set free by. Is that view out of reach of the average Christian Scientist, who may not be a practitioner or teacher of Christian Science? No, it's not out of reach, as has been found by thousands of Christian Scientists from the time of its discovery.
Often it has been a severe – even "impossible" – human situation that has turned someone's thought toward acceptance of and realization of the fact that Christ, Truth, does speak to human consciousness. That was the case for Jesus' disciples, certainly. They thought Jesus had been crucified and buried and lost to them forever.
But something happened to Mary at the tomb, and to two of the disciples on that bleak trip to Emmaus. Something happened on that glorious morning at the shore of the Sea of Galilee. And the same thing can and does happen to us. We find – if we're listening – that the Christ speaks to human consciousness. "Discerning Christ, Truth, anew on the shore of time," Mrs. Eddy writes of the disciples, "they were enabled to rise somewhat from mortal sensuousness, or the burial of mind in matter, into newness of life as Spirit." (SH p. 35)
"Discerning Christ, Truth, anew [again but with a fresh perspective] on the shore of time" is of course the title and theme of our Association address. And that discerning can make all the difference between generally identifying ourselves as a Christian Scientists and living more within the actual Science of Christ and being changed and healed and transformed by it.
We'll be sending study references as soon as possible, but in the meantime, please take a look at – that is, read anew, with new eyes and fresh attention – Science and Health 35:6, 10-14, 37: 22-9, 38:23, and 43:3. These are preliminary references. A full set of study references and your annual assignment will come as soon as possible.
With deepest affection,
Allison W. Phinney, C.S.B.
P.S. You will find several new items of recent fruitage posted on the website, and also a great article in the May 6, 1922 Christian Science Sentinel about the value of getting to Association by Daisette McKenzie, a well-known early worker.