'Christian Science is not Scientology'
William Battle III, a spokesman for Christian Science in Maryland, dropped by the office this week to introduce himself, and to talk about a little-understood denomination that he says has 19 churches and about 1,000 members in the state.
He later sent us some information, including a list of frequently asked questions, which struck us as interesting enough to post here, after the jump.
Why is it called Christian Science?
It is Christian because it is based on the teachings of Jesus. It is scientific because it uses the laws of God, and when systematically applied to any situation, brings about expected results. Christian Science is not Scientology.
Is Christian Science a religion?
It is a religion as well as a system of spiritually-based care. It is a religion in the sense that there is a church—the Church of Christ, Scientist—that supports the practice of Christian Science throughout the world, and it is based on the Bible, especially the teachings of Jesus. However, it is also a system of spiritually-based health care that is studied and practiced by people of all backgrounds.
Who is Mary Baker Eddy?
Mary Baker Eddy (1821–1910) was an influential American author, teacher, and religious leader, noted for her groundbreaking ideas about spirituality and health, which she named Christian Science. She articulated those ideas in her major work, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, first published in 1875.
Are Christian Scientists free to seek medical treatment?
Yes. All health care decisions are up to the individual. Having said that, many Christian Scientists have consistently found prayer to be a reliable means of health care.
Is Christian Science faith healing?
No, if by faith healing you mean that the result of prayer, good or bad, is the will of God. Nothing in Christian Science theology says it’s God’s will that anyone suffer or be sick, but rather it is God’s will for each individual to have health and life.
What do Christian Scientists mean when they talk about healing through prayer?
Prayer in Christian Science is rooted in the nature of God as good and in each individual’s relationship to God. It is the progressive understanding of this fact—that one can never be separated from God and God’s love—that brings healing of anything that needs healing, whether it involves one’s physical health, emotional well-being—or, for that matter, one’s community or the world at large. Through Christian Science, millions have learned that no problem is too big—or too small—for God. There are no rituals, formulas, or incantations in Christian Science prayer.