“Architecture of the Church of the Christian Science [sic]”
Lessiter, Sally. “Architecture of the Church of the Christian Science [sic].” Acta Comparanda Subsidia II (2015): 67–85.
This article stems from Lessiter’s talk at the Faculty for Comparative Study of Religions and Humanism (fvg) in Belgium titled “Architecture and Design of Six, Purpose-Built, Early, Christian Science Churches in London.” Lessiter looks at those six churches and asks what images were being presented to the public. Lessiter notes what one writer said about Mary Baker Eddy: that she liked a ‘churchly’ character of edifices, signaling simplicity, beauty, order, harmony, and the nature of the people who come to worship in them. The churches included a foyer where people gathered, as well as a pulpit/lectern space where ‘sermons’ are preached—which in the Christian Science church consists of two elected members reading from the Bible and Eddy’s Science and Health. Also needed were excellent acoustics to hear readers and testifiers, which meant good reflecting surfaces on ceilings. Nowhere embedded in the architecture are found depictions of Eddy’s life, or icons or statues, but foundation stones are common. Eddy wrote: “All types employed in the service of Christian Science should represent the most spiritual forms of thought and worship that can be made visible” (Miscellaneous Writings, 91). Biblical quotes adorn Christian Science churches and sometimes images, such as the cross and crown trademark as found on Eddy’s textbook.
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