Michell arrives at four main reasons for the steep decline in Christian Science membership during the second half of the 20th century by interviewing mainly women who have left the Church. Her specific feminist approach to the question provides a painful but valuable critique on the history of the patriarchal style of church decisions after Mary Baker Eddy’s death.View Annotation
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Michell examines in detail the remarkable similarities where the unorthodox theologies of Julian of Norwich (14th century) and Eddy (19th century) converge. Both women struggled with serious illness and near-death experiences which became the basis for profound revelation and healing. Eddy understood God as mother, and Julian’s vision of Jesus as mother reflected on the kindness and gentleness of God.View Annotation
Michell examines the influences, and theological connections and differences, between the teachings of Mary Baker Eddy, Emma Curtis Hopkins, the 19th-century Woman’s movement, and the New Thought and New Age movements. Hopkins, unlike Eddy, would see Truth in all religions, not limited to Christianity, and focused more on a prosperity gospel.View Annotation