“What is a Christian Scientist?” in Religions in America
Stokes, J. Buroughs. “What is a Christian Scientist?” Pages 69-81 in Religions in America. Edited by Leo Rosten. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1975.
Nearly half a century ago, Stokes, the official spokesperson for The First Church of Christ, Scientist (The Mother Church), answered common questions about Christian Science. He aimed to make “discussions of metaphysical points intelligible to readers or hearers who may be unacquainted with our general conceptual framework” (69). The questions are those that were frequently heard during the 1970s and often still today in the 2020s, such as: Why do you consider Christian Science Christian or scientific? How do you understand Jesus and Mary Baker Eddy? What do sacraments and the Trinity mean to Christian Scientists? Do you accept medical care for sick children, fractures, or childbirth? Do you believe in heaven or hell? Those close to Christian Science now will recognize how the answers to some of the questions indicate a shift in language and social engagement since the 1970s, such as “What is your attitude toward Black people?” “toward women?” “toward vaccination?” The term ‘man’ is used without association with gender, as is more commonly understood in the 21st century. But the basic theological underpinning of the Church’s self-understanding is still valid. More current information may be available on the Christian Science Church website.
Annotations related by category:
- Availability: Library or Purchase
- Official Christian Science Publication: Yes
- Organizations: The First Church of Christ, Scientist
- Publication Date: 1956-1980
- Resource Types: Encyclopedia or Dictionary
- Subjects: Bible
- Subjects: Church Practices
- Subjects: Healing and Health
- Subjects: Medicine
- Subjects: Theology