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About the “Church of Christ, Scientist” / “Christian Science” church / “Christian Scientists” / “Christian Scientism”


Christian Way

Fellowship of Former Christian Scientists


Christian Way

Stories from former Christian Scientists

It’s not Christian, it’s not Biblical and it’s not scientific.

It was founded in 19th-century New England by a false teacher named Mary Baker Eddy (1821–1910), who wrote the 1875 book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, which outlined the theology of Christian Science. This book became Christian Science’s central text. The Mother church of this belief system was built in 1994 in Boston, Massachusetts. The church is known for its newspaper, The Christian Science Monitor, and for its public Reading Rooms around the world. She founded the Massachusetts Metaphysical College in 1881.

Eddy’s theology is nontrinitarian: she viewed the Trinity as suggestive of polytheism. Adherents subscribe to a radical form of philosophical idealism, believing that reality is purely spiritual and the material world an illusion. This includes the view that disease is a mental error rather than physical disorder, and that the sick should be treated not by medicine but by a form of prayer that seeks to correct the beliefs responsible for the illusion of ill health.

Eddy viewed God not as a person but as “All-in-all”. Although she often described God in the language of personhood—she used the term “Father–Mother God”, and in the third edition of Science and Health she referred to God as “she”—God is mostly represented in Christian Science by the synonyms “Mind, Spirit, Soul, Principle, Life, Truth, Love”. The Holy Ghost is Christian Science, and Heaven and Hell are merely states of mind.

She saw Jesus not as God incarnate but as a Christian Scientist, a “Way-shower” between humanity and God, and she distinguished between Jesus the man and the concept of Christ, making the latter a synonym for Truth and Jesus the first person to fully to manifest it. Eddy did not believe that the Bible was fully accurate. She did not accept all of the Genesis Creation account. For Eddy, the crucifixion was not a divine sacrifice for the sins of humanity, the atonement (the forgiveness of sin through). Her views on life after death were vague and, according to researcher Bryan R. Wilson, “there is no doctrine of the soul” in Christian Science: “After death, the individual continues his probationary state until he has worked out his own salvation by proving the truths of Christian Science.”

There is no supplication to God in Christian Science prayer. The process involves engaging in a silent argument to affirm to herself the unreality of matter, something Christian Science practitioners will do for a fee, including in absentia, to address ill health or other problems. Christian Scientists avoid almost all medical treatment, relying instead on Christian Science prayer. This consists of silently arguing with oneself; there are no appeals to a personal god, and no set words.

Q & A


Streaming video— 
“Why we left Christian Science,” former practitioners explain
Tanner and Hillary Johnsrud grew up in Christian Science and became professional practitioners. Tanner taught about Christian Science around the US and served at the Boston “Mother Church.” In this video, they describe how Jesus opened their eyes to the true Gospel, and why they walked away from Christian Science. They also describe some of the troubling practices with Mary Baker Eddy.
Video by Doreen Virtue
Length: 172 minutes
Streaming video— 
“Speaker at 2014 Fellowship of Former Christian Scientists Conference”
Former Christian Scientist Linda Kramer discusses her exit from Christian Science and the journey that led her to write a book entitled Perfect Peril: Christian Science and Mind Control. Linda’s presentation includes a description of “mind control theory” and shows how Christian Science teachings and practices fit the theory.
by Christian Way
Length: 69 minutes
Streaming video— 
“What is Christian Science? Part 1”
Hosts talk with someone whose family is 5th-generation Christian Science. What is Christian Science? What do they believe? Find out.
by Apologia Studios
Length: 54 minutes
Streaming video— 
“What is Christian Science? Part 2”
Hosts talk with someone whose family is 5th-generation Christian Science. What is Christian Science? What do they believe?
by Apologia Studios
Length: 63 minutes
Article Version: February 12, 2023