The Christian Science



"In this age the earth will help the woman; the spiritual idea will be understood."

(Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, p. 570)


                        Volume 14, Number 1                                                                                              January 2006

                                Christian Science Endtime Center                                                                                       P. O. Box 27539, Denver, CO 80227





Text Box: Our Leader, 
Mary Baker Eddy,
    “In reality there is, 
and can be, but one 
school of the Science of 
Mind-healing. Any 
departure from Science 
is an irreparable loss 
of Science. . . .
     “A slight divergence 
is fatal in Science.”
       —Rudimental Divine Science
               pp. 16:15-17; 17:1 only










Part I of II

















In the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mary Baker Eddy writes of the “one school” and the consequences of a divergence:


Is there more than one school of Christian Science?  Christian Science is demonstrable.  There can, therefore, be but one method in its teaching.  Those who depart from this method forfeit their claims to belong to its school. . . .

Any theory of Christian Science, which departs from what has already been stated and proved to be true, affords no foundation upon which to establish a genuine school of this Science.  (S&H 112:3-7, 23-26)


She also writes in Rudimental Divine Science:


In reality there is, and can be, but one school of the Science of Mind-healing.  Any departure from Science is an irreparable loss of Science. . . .

A slight divergence is fatal in Science.  (Rud. 16:15-17; 17:1 only)


And again, in Miscellaneous Writings, she writes:


A single mistake in metaphysics, or in ethics, is more fatal than a mistake in physics.

If a teacher of Christian Science unwittingly or intentionally offers his own thought, and gives me as authority for it; if he diverges from Science and knows it not, . . . this divergence widens.  . . .  This error in the teacher also predisposes his students to make mistakes and lose their way.  . . .  All must have one Principle and the same rule; and all who follow the Principle and rule have but one opinion of it.  (Mis. 264:29-11)


In 1938, Stanley C. Larkin, former author and editor of The Christian Science Standard and founder of the Christian Science Endtime Center, was present at a series of interviews with  Mrs. Annie M. Knott, CSD,[1] and his mother, Mrs. Marie K. Larkin, CSB, a Primary class student of Mrs. Knott.  During these interviews, Mrs. Knott revealed that a divergence from the “one school of Christian Science” had occurred around the turn of the century and that there was a real danger of losing Mrs. Eddy’s “school of Christian Science.” 


It was apparent to Mrs. Knott that the movement, with all of its resources, had switched to the variant exclusively, contrary to Mary Baker Eddy’s God-given wisdom, and contrary to the demand prescribed in her deeds of trust, as reported by the Massachusetts Supreme Court decision in 1921.  It wasn’t only a matter of endorsing the variant teaching, it was the fact that all of the resources, finances, appointments, labors and efforts that had gone into the operation and activities of The Mother Church in the 1920s and prior, in promoting Mrs. Eddy's teaching, were now reversed, and all of the finances, efforts and labors went into promoting and extending Christian Science according to the variant.


With the publication in 1977 of Robert Peel's book, Mary Baker Eddy, The Years of Authority, authorized by The Mother Church, it became evident to Mr. Larkin that the variant teaching had become the official position of The Mother Church.  During the years 1977 and 1981-1983, an extensive correspondence was carried on between the Board of Directors of The Mother Church and Mr. Larkin in which he thoroughly explained the historic fact that since the turn of the twentieth century there have been two teachings within the Christian Science Movement.  He presented them with voluminous written material outlining the variant teaching and how it had become entrenched in the teaching system of the church, and the great danger this imposed for Christian Scientists.  The Board rejected his well-documented information as an attempt “to revive a dispute that simply does not exist for the present generation of Christian Scientists.”  (Complete correspondence is on file at the Endtime Center.) 


Mr. Larkin could not “accede to [their] request” to drop “this vital question concerning the two teachings in the movement,” because the Board’s response made it apparent to him that Mrs. Eddy's school was in danger of being lost.  He felt that in all fairness, Christian Scientists should know of the two schools sometimes referred to as the “Boston  school” (Mrs. Eddy’s teaching) and the “Chicago school” (the variant teaching).  Mr. Larkin also felt that there should be an institution either within or outside of the organization of The Mother Church to promote the school of Mrs. Eddy, —  her classroom teaching of the 1880s, — so present day Christian Scientists would have a choice of Mrs. Eddy’s school or the variant.  For this reason, Mr. Larkin, impelled by his duty to our Leader, established the Christian Science Endtime Center as a depository — not a new denomination — and began teaching and directing seminars that would reinstate Christian Science as taught by Mrs. Eddy.  He also began publishing The Christian Science Standard in 1989 and mailing it to Christian Science churches, Reading Rooms, practitioners, and teachers to alert them to the variant teaching in the movement and to uphold Mrs. Eddy’s place in Bible prophecy.


The pages that follow are a reprint of The Christian Science Standard, Volume 6, Number 1, January 1995, authored and edited by Mr. Larkin.  It clearly outlines the history of how the variant teaching became entrenched in the church’s teaching system and also, the major differences in the variant school from that of Mrs. Eddy’s school of Christian Science.  Because of its length, it will be issued in two parts.


Part I

The  Christian  Science  Standard,  Volume  6,  Number  1,  January  1995

authored  and  edited  by  Stanley  C.  Larkin




The graph on page 1 shows the Christian Science Movement in what appears to be an irreversible decline which began in the 1930s.  The decline, however, is reversible.  In order to reverse it, the initial cause of the decline must be detected.  When detected, it must be corrected.  And when it is corrected the downward plunge will be reversed and the line on the graph will turn upward once again.



IN THE 1930s?


According to the graph, the Christian Science Movement for two decades following the passing of Mrs. Eddy in 1910, experiences a swift upward thrust until the decade of the 1930s where it comes to an abrupt halt, and remains constant until 1950, at which time it goes immediately into a desperate plunge.


The progress achieved since 1880, for five decades, by the Christian Science Movement came to a halt.  The reasons for this rise, reverse shift, and plunge — and how to turn it around — are explained in this issue and in Part II which will follow.




We continue to receive questions as to why we are not affiliated with the Boston organization.  The answer is that we were created out of the struggle of Mrs. Annie M. Knott, CSD (1850-1941), to champion Mrs. Eddy’s “one school”[2] of Christian Science teaching, while Mrs. Knott held the position of an associate editor of the periodicals and later, of Director, covering the period 1903 to 1933.


We are not outside of Mary Baker Eddy’s church.  Our explanation of the Christ in the issues of The Standard for January and April 1994, [see also Vol. 13, Nos. 1 B 4, 2004] show that we have the foundation rock of the Church of Christ, Scientist.  We are within the spiritual concept of Mrs. Eddy’s church because we are upholding, promoting, and protecting her teaching and her place in prophecy.



In 1919 the deeds which organized The Mother Church and the Publishing Society were challenged in court, resulting in the 1921 Supreme Court of Massachusetts finding[3] that:


(1) In the 1892 trust deed for The Mother Church, “The directors were required upon completion of the church building . . . not to allow in the church building any preaching or other religious services not consonant and in strict harmony with the doctrines and practice of Christian Science as taught and explained by Mrs. Eddy.”


(2)  Mrs. Eddy’s trust deed of January 1898, for the Publishing Society was “for the purpose of more effectually promoting and extending the religion of Christian Science as taught by me.”


The Supreme Court further found and declared that “It is manifest from the structure of the trust deed as well as from its express words that the single and only design of the founder was to promote and extend the religion of Christian Science as taught by Mrs. Eddy.  Every part of the trust deed reenforces and makes even more plain the avowed purpose of Mrs. Eddy that her sole and completely dominating aim in establishing the trust was to promote and extend the religion of Christian Science as taught by her.  The administration of that trust must continue to be directed exclusively to the accomplishment of that object alone” (p. 1173).


“The promotion of Christian Science as taught by Mrs. Eddy was the end and aim of the trust.  To that regnant design all other provisions, not in themselves made fixed and unchangeable, must yield” (p. 1174).


This finding and decision by the Supreme Court states clearly Mrs. Eddy’s purpose for her trusts and for the Trustees.  The sole purpose for these two deeds was to ensure the promotion of Mrs. Eddy’s teachings.  It was the breaching of these two deeds that sent the movement into a tailspin, as will be developed further in this issue and Part II.




The teaching for which the two trust deeds were created is that which Mrs. Eddy taught in the Massachusetts Metaphysical College in the 1880s and 1890s — with no variations.


A student in one of Mrs. Eddy’s classes writes in 1886:


From hearing Mrs. Eddy preach, from reading her book (however carefully), from talking with her, you do not get an adequate idea of her mental powers, unless you hear her also in her classes.  Not only is she glowingly earnest in presenting her convictions, but her language and illustrations are remarkably well chosen.  . . .  She is sharp to detect variations from her own view, and to expose the difference.[4]


The two deeds of trust require the preservation and promotion of Christian Science as taught by Mrs. Eddy.  This teaching demands the necessity of detecting variations and exposing the difference.


In the 1930s the Directors breached their trust by forcing a variation into the church’s teaching system, which remains to this day.


In 1977 the Directors authorized a book by Robert Peel which states that variants are inevitable and acceptable, since “the ultimate teacher of Christian Science is Science and Health.”[5]  He writes:


So far as Mrs. Eddy was concerned, the ultimate teacher of Christian Science was Science and Health.  The educational system of her church was bigger than any one teacher appointed to conduct a Normal class for the Board of Education.  She herself would not always be present personally to make even-handed choice of competent Christian Scientists for that office and to keep any particular emphasis or interpretation of Christian Science from entrenching itself in the church's teaching system.[6]


This statement is incorrect.  It presents a false view.  The trust deeds were executed for the sole purpose of making the Directors (as well as the Trustees of the Publishing Society) responsible for preserving her teaching with no variations.




In her Message to The Mother Church for 1900 (p. 9:25) Mrs. Eddy states that for some time she had “desired to step aside and have some one take [her] place as leader,” but no one seemed equal to the task.


The Cause of Christian Science had grown steadily during the nine years since she closed her college and dissolved the organization of The Mother Church in 1889.  There was a need in 1898 for more teachers.  In the work of conducting Normal classes, she now stepped aside and appointed her student, Mrs. Flavia S. Knapp, CSD, of Boston.[7]  However, before the class convened Mrs. Knapp passed away.  Mrs. Eddy then appointed Mr. Edward A. Kimball, CSD, of Chicago, to teach.





Under a five-year contract for annual Normal classes, Mr. Kimball taught the first class in the newly established Board of Education in 1899.  Mrs. Eddy was his predecessor in teaching Normal classes at the College.  His students were those who had taken a Primary class with Mrs. Eddy or her students.  A number of students, based on their prior Primary class teaching, thought there was a decided difference between Mr. Kimball’s teaching in the Board of Education, and that of Mrs. Eddy’s as given in the Massachusetts Metaphysical College.  As one biographer writes:


Edward Kimball, writing to Judge Septimus J. Hanna as late as November 29, 1907, lamented that there were those prominent enough to command the Leader’s ear who were beating a constant pathway to her door to carry the evil insinuation that his [Kimball’s] teaching was wrong. . . .  How could anyone, however great, be wholly unmoved by the constant stream of provocative reports, unrelieved by any counteracting statements?[8]


According to this letter referred to by the biographer, received a few days before Judge Hanna began his 1907 Normal class, Mrs. Eddy had a “conversation and instruction” session with Mr. Kimball regarding the complaints she had heard, in an attempt to expose the difference in his teaching.  He outlined some of the points of difference which she discussed with him, but from his letter he apparently did not understand Mrs. Eddy’s instructions, and it appears he continued to believe what he had been teaching to be correct.


In this letter Kimball briefly explained to Judge Hanna his teaching position, about which there were complaints:[9]


1.  “a lie is always necessarily a lie about the truth” [i.e., that a lie is somehow connected to the truth].

2.  “every normal thing in matter is a lie about a spiritual fact or idea;”

3.  “body is spiritual; it consists of spiritual ideas.  Every idea is perfect, . . .”

4.  “the idea of which liver [for instance] is a false concept is perfect in Good. . .”

5.  [to deny the body] “the logical conclusion would be death wouldn’t it?” etc.


When Judge Hanna received this letter as he was beginning to teach the Normal class, December 4, 1907, he maintained that these views were not Christian Science as he had been taught by Mrs. Eddy.


By contrast, Science and Health states:


1.  “Entirely separate from the belief and dream of material living, is the Life divine . . .”  (S&H 14:25).

2.  “It is contrary to Christian Science to suppose that life is either material or organically spiritual.” (S&H 83:21-22).

3.  Man has no material body — is incorporeal (see S&H 576:18-20, 31-4).

4.  Man works from the standpoint of what is written in Science and Health p. 216:11-21.


Judge Hanna (1845-1921) did not show the 1907 letter from Mr. Kimball or openly criticize it.  However, Judge Hanna did expose the difference between the Kimball teaching and that of Mrs. Eddy’s in his classes and when questioned in correspondence.  Fifteen or so years after his decease, Hanna’s secretary, as a friendly gesture, sent the letter to Kimball’s daughter, Mrs. Edna Kimball Wait.  Believing it to be an important statement of her father’s teaching, she added it to his book, Lectures and Articles on Christian Science, and copyrighted it as a “New Issue” in 1938.  The extract of Kimball’s letter to Hanna appears on pages 489-492.




In 1899 Mrs. Annie M. Knott, CSD, a personal student of Mrs. Eddy, from Detroit, had an experience which henceforth would enable her to detect variations from Mrs. Eddy’s teachings and to expose the difference.  One of her most loyal and devoted students, who had been healed of invalidism, attended the 1899 Normal class, which was taught by Mr. Kimball.  When she returned to Detroit as a new teacher she circulated around that Mrs. Knott’s teaching was incorrect.  Because of the circulating of this misinformation, one of Mrs. Knott's students sued her in court for the return of his tuition plus damages.  In 1903 the court ruled in Mrs. Knott’s favor, but in the meantime her reputation was seriously damaged.


These court actions were a serious attack on Mrs. Knott and her reputation as a teacher and practitioner.  The clarity and purity of her teaching had been assailed.  Even though the ruling had been in her favor, members of her pupils’ association withdrew and deserted her.  In the court room shouts of  “’Fraud!’  ***  ‘Quack!!’  *** ‘Imposter!!!’ were heard.”  The attorney for the prosecution “roared,  . . .  to adulterate Christian Science is to impose on mankind!”[10]  The experience left her with an indelible awareness that a variant teaching now existed within the Christian Science Movement, and during this time she learned the differences between Mrs. Eddy’s school and the Kimball teaching.  Although she had suffered loss of respect as to her teaching ability, the day of vindication and redress was not far off.





The theory advanced by Robert Peel in his book, quoted earlier (see also Peel, pp. 249-252), that it is all right to have variant or divergent interpretations entrenched in the church’s teaching system, since Science and Health is “the ultimate teacher,” is not valid.


Mrs. Eddy’s actions, when she discovered a variant teaching in her church’s teaching system, disprove Peel’s statement.  In 1902 she discontinued the annual Normal classes taught by Kimball, and in 1903 she established a General Association of Teachers to meet annually.  Its purpose was stated in the By-Laws:  “Uniformity in Teaching and Practice Required.”




Mr. William Lyman Johnson, son of William B. Johnson, the first Clerk of The Mother Church, describes this period around 1901 thus:


The rapid spread of Christian Science, the establishment and erection of branch churches, the active labor in the distribution of literature, the increasing amount of attention demanded by laws prohibiting Christian Science practice, the activities of Publication Committees, the participation of church and society organizations in active assistance in war work, — all these absorbing things have been of great significance, and have so filled thought with the needs of the present and of the future that the past has drifted out of remembrance, and in the conception of many become a dead issue.


With the birth of the conception that the old and veteran students and workers who had been with Mrs. Eddy were antiquated in their ideas; that the young Scientist was working in what he called a modern method which gave speed and efficiency, the past with all its glorious achievements, was forgotten by many, and there came about that insidious and tempting argument which would bury the efforts of the past beneath the surface achievements of the present.  This, though Mrs. Eddy carefully guarded her students against it, was the cause of the many offshoots from her teaching.  The desire of an easier method of obtaining results by a short cut; to reach by a cold and mathematical process the point she urged her students to attain through humility and love of the character of Jesus, brought about the reign of personality.  And this it must necessarily do since there can be no attraction in the teaching of material healing, except through the over-powering influence of a teacher’s personality.  The more the spirit of Jesus is left out of the teaching of Christian Science, the greater becomes the field for a dominating will.  Teaching will still go on, but healing alas, will decline until there comes the realization of the necessity of making


“My prayer, some daily good to do

To Thine, for Thee;

 An offering pure of Love, whereto

God leadeth me.”


In about 1901, statements were put forth that the students of Mrs. Eddy were not up-to-date in the latest methods of teaching, lecturing and carrying on the Cause, and that active blood was needed which would bring into the work the most modern type of business methods, and these believed that they should be placed upon the Board of Directors, and into other positions of importance.  It was found, however, that the man who was most efficient in a large business way, was not a successful person in the important positions of the Mother Church and near Mrs. Eddy.  To be so it was necessary for him to give his attention to but one thing, viz: Christian Science.  To learn to live and demonstrate it in every-day work, requires constant study and practice, and the fledgling in Science, astute business man though he may be, has and will find pitfalls and troubles.  As in every other undertaking, the preserved veteran, with caution, and prayerful consecration to the duties before him, will prove to be a person of the best type for membership of the important Boards of the Cause.[11]






When Judge Hanna resigned his posts as First Reader and editor of the periodicals in June 1902, he was succeeded by Mr. Archibald McLellan, with Mr. John B. Willis as assistant editor.  Both were students of Mr. Kimball.  A year later Mrs. Eddy appointed Mrs. Knott as an assistant editor to serve with McLellan and Willis.  In corresponding with the Directors about this appointment Mrs. Eddy wrote:


It is just to pay Mrs. Knott her price and she will earn it, I trust.  She is good, well educated and has been through the primary and normal classes under my instruction [i.e., at the Massachusetts Metaphysical College].  A student qualified thus the directors know is needed on the staff editorial.  Do not fail to secure her price and so inform her at once.[12]


This letter shows that Mrs. Knott was being engaged as a guardian, or monitor, to see that Christian Science as taught by Mrs. Eddy at the Massachusetts Metaphysical College in the 1880s and 1890s was adhered to in the periodicals.


Christian Science as interpreted in her 1880s and 1890s classes was the criterion, — the standard. Although Kimball believed he supported his interpretations by citations from Mrs. Eddy’s writings, Mrs. Eddy disagreed.  Any other interpretation of Science and Health would not qualify for the classification of Christian Science as taught by Mrs. Eddy according to the explicit purpose of the trust deeds, and under the decision of the Supreme Court of Massachusetts.


In the appointment of Mrs. Knott, Mrs. Eddy obviously was moving toward the time she could step aside as monitor and guardian of her teachings.





At the time of the third annual meeting of the General Association of Teachers, Mrs. Eddy called the Directors and the editors to a meeting at her residence in Concord on October 3, 1905.  The editor, Mr. McLellan, was also a Director.  The two associate editors were Mr. Willis and Mrs. Knott.  This group of seven was seated in front of Mrs. Eddy in a semicircle.  After her greeting she asked each Director if he carefully read the drafts of the editorials and lead articles of the Journal and Sentinel before they went to press.  It was a requirement in those days and for several decades that the editorials and lead article in each issue of the periodicals were to be read and approved by all of the Directors before going to press.


She then took from her desk a copy of the Sentinel for September 30, 1905, and called attention to the lead article, titled “The Redemption of Our Body,” by Clarence W. Chadwick (a pupil of Mr. Kimball) and read these words:  “A diseased body is not acceptable to God.”  She did not indicate in any way whether or not she approved or disapproved of the statement.  She asked the Director at the end of the semicircle if he considered that statement scientific.  He said that he did.  She read the statement over in turn to each Director and asked him specifically the same question.  All of the Directors and Mr. Willis gave affirmative answers.


Mrs. Knott was the last to be asked the question.  She replied that she had stumbled over it several times but decided to let it go through.  Mrs. Eddy responded: “Then you are the one to blame.  You are my student are you not?”  (Mrs. Knott was the only member of the editorial staff so qualified.)  Mrs. Eddy continued: “Did I ever teach you anything like this?”  Then, to the whole group she said in strong tones: “Now, will any of you tell me whether God has any more use for a well body than for a sick one?”


Turning to Mrs. Knott again, Mrs. Eddy “said that her reason for having me [Mrs. Knott] come to Boston was because she hoped I would have been able to see that her teachings [i.e., as given at the Massachusetts Metaphysical College] were strictly adhered to in the articles which went out. . . .  She insisted that man’s likeness to God is never a bodily likeness, and called our attention to page 313 of Science and Health, lines 12 to 19.”[13]


At the same meeting, Mrs. Eddy again rebuked Mrs. Knott for allowing an editorial to go through unchallenged.  Mr. Willis, an associate editor like Mrs. Knott, had recently written a Sentinel editorial titled “Watching vs. Watching Out,” (September 16, 1905, page 40) which Mrs. Eddy corrected the following week with an article by the same title (September 23, 1905, page 56).  Mrs. Knott did not know she was responsible for what the other editors and the Directors wrote, but Mrs. Eddy made it clear that each one was responsible for keeping the periodicals “distinctly and unmistakably scientific” (see footnote 15).


“Mrs. Eddy talked with us for nearly two hours, and left it very clear that no one is to be judged by his or her physical condition [body], but by character and spiritual attainments.”[14]  “Mrs. Eddy wrote me soon after my return to Boston, expressing the hope that I would rise above this false sense which had made me let error pass unchallenged into our periodicals, and she gave me the encouraging thought that she would pray for me.”[15]


This conference of October 3, 1905, corrects the mistaken belief that Mrs. Eddy approved of just any interpretation of her writings.  It is clear that its purpose was to correct variations from her teaching and to expose the difference.  This conference had the effect of commissioning Mrs. Knott, for the remainder of her life in Boston, to see that Mrs. Eddy’s teachings were strictly adhered to.



LIFETIME    1906, 1907


The first Normal class to be held since Mrs. Eddy discontinued them in 1902 was given by Mr. Eugene H. Greene, CSD, of Providence, in 1906.  The following year, in 1907, Mrs. Eddy had Judge Hanna teach the Normal class.  Mr. Greene and Judge Hanna taught these classes according to Mrs. Eddy’s presentation in the Massachusetts Metaphysical College in the 1880s and 1890s.  The last two Normal classes during her lifetime were given strictly according to that standard.  After 1907 Mrs. Eddy changed the By-Law to one Normal class every third year.


Thus Mrs. Eddy prepared the organization so that she could “step aside”:  (1) the Normal classes were now set in place; (2) Mrs. Knott had been positioned as an unofficial monitor, or guardian, of her teachings in the periodicals; (3) the criterion had been established as to what constituted the “teaching of Christian Science as taught by her”; (4) the two deeds of trust were in place.




When Mr. Kimball passed away on August 13, 1909, Mr. McLellan, the editor, wrote a dignified, compassionate tribute which appeared in the Sentinel of August 21,

1909.  Two weeks later, in the Sentinel of September 4,[16] there appeared the belated tribute attributed to Mrs. Eddy with the words “clear, correct teaching of Christian Science,” and which now appears in Miscellany, p. 297:18.  Many think this is Mrs. Eddy’s authorization of Mr. Kimball’s teaching.  This is not so.


Mrs. Eddy did not write the tribute, or want it published.  It was written and “put through” by her secretary, Mr. Adam H. Dickey, who had two classes under Mr. Kimball.[17]  Mr. John V. Dittemore, CSB, published a brief, one-paragraph summary of a four-page report of events which took place in Mrs. Eddy’s home in 1909 and 1910:


Statement by Adelaide Still, Mrs. Eddy’s personal maid, dated January 4, 1919, four pages, relating to events and experiences in Mrs. Eddy's home during the term of her service and especially just before Mrs. Eddy’s decease, covering details of household life, a sensational experience connected with one of Mrs. Eddy’s secretaries, description of conditions the last time Mrs. Stetson was a caller at Chestnut Hill, comments on activities and methods of Messrs. Rathvon and Tomlinson, unsuccessful efforts to get Mrs. Eddy to remove her name from Manual in places where her consent was demanded, description of how Mrs. Eddy’s published statement in connection with the decease of Mr. Kimball was put through, and various other matters of similar import.[18]


The phrase “was put through” indicates that Mrs. Eddy signed the article against her will.  However, she took steps to correct this by excluding it from the manuscript for her book, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany.


Eight days after the decease of Mr. Kimball and before her signed statement was published, an official report states:  “On August 21st, 1909, Mrs. Eddy sealed up the package of prepared articles [for her future book, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, and Miscellany] and wrote on the wrapper:  ‘Nobody shall open this or read its contents during my lifetime without my written consent.’”[19] The tribute to Mr. Kimball was never in the package, but was added in 1913, by the Directors on their own authority, three years after her passing.[20]



IN EDITORIALS    1913-1914


In 1913, Mr. McLellan, editor of the Christian Science periodicals, asked Mrs. Knott to write some articles to correct certain mistaken views of Christian Science teaching (i.e., Kimball) which had continued to come to his notice.  Subsequently, he was obliged to write in the Sentinel of February 7, 1914, that the editors had


received several letters . . . from different places, indicating that there was considerable misconception extant as to Christian Science treatment.  One letter, for instance, mentioned a lady who was told that her hand was an idea of God, and therefore exempt from pain.  Because of the manifest sincerity of this correspondent, and because of other letters which had brought up similar questions, the editor asked one of his associates [Mrs. Knott], one of Mrs. Eddy's oldest and most trusted students, to write some editorials which would correct the false impression of Christian Science treatment which these letters indicated was abroad.  These editorials appeared in the Journal for December, 1913, and the Sentinel for January 10, 1914.  The erroneous views of Christian Science which were condemned in these editorials had never been taught by Mrs. Eddy, as was well known to the editors of the Journal and Sentinel, and it was not supposed by them that such views had been taught by any authorized teacher of Christian Science.  They believed that these letters simply put into words some of the various vagrant misconceptions of Christian Science which pass current among many who call themselves Christian Scientists, but who have failed to grasp the true intent of the teachings set forth in Science and Health.

Imagine the editors' surprise, therefore, when letters began to come in which claimed that these editorials were regarded by some as having been written in condemnation of the teachings of a well-known and greatly honored and respected teacher of Christian Science [Mr. Kimball].





Dr. Braden, in his book, Christian Science Today (the material for which he researched in the libraries of Kimball adherents in California), recognizing the militant nature of the two schools of teaching, wrote that after the publication of these two editorials by Mrs. Knott in 1913-1914, “the battle lines were now sharply drawn” between “officialdom in the person of Mrs. Knott” and the teaching of Mr. Kimball and his Normal class students, of which there were now possibly more than those of Mrs. Eddy.[21]


Now it was apparent to many in the field that a second teaching was entrenched in the church's teaching system.  Referring to this specific problem, Robert Peel explains, “[two teachings in the movement] was one more lesson she [Mrs. Eddy] had learned from coming to grips with a concrete situation which threatened to divide the field.”[22]


It was becoming clearer that the Kimball teaching was prevailing over Mrs. Eddy’s teaching, and that his teaching was well represented and entrenched.



         . . . to be continued in Part II







[1]Mrs. Annie M. Knott, CSD, a personal student of Mrs. Eddy's, was called to Boston by Mrs. Eddy in 1903 to be an editor of the Christian Science periodicals, and later was a member of the Christian Science Board of Directors for fourteen years, 1919-1933.  She was referred to by the editor of the Christian Science periodicals in 1914, as "one of Mrs. Eddy's oldest and most trusted students." (Christian Science Sentinel, Vol. XVI, p. 450)

[2]See Science and Health, p. 112:3-15 (note marginal heading), also lines 23-26.

[3]Proceedings in Equity (Boston: The Christian Science Publishing Society, 1921), pp. 1171-1177.  In 1892 and 1898 Mrs. Eddy made two trusts:  (1) The trust deed of 1892 for The Mother Church; and (2) The trust deed of 1898 for The Christian Science Publishing Society.

[4]The Christian Science Journal, Vol. 4, May 1886, p. 39.

[5]Robert Peel, Mary Baker Eddy, The Years of Authority (NY:  Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1977), p. 251.

[6]Ibid, p. 252.

[7]Bliss Knapp, Ira O. and Flavia S. Knapp (Boston: Privately Printed,1925), p.133.

[8]Hugh A. Studdert-Kennedy, Mrs. Eddy (San Francisco: The Farallon Press, 1947), p. 387.

[9]See Edward A. Kimball, Lectures and Articles on Christian Science (Chesterton, Indiana:  H. H. Wait, 1938 ed. or later), pp. 489-492.  This is an extract of Mr. Kimball's letter to Judge Hanna.

[10]"Mrs. Knott on the Witness Stand," Detroit Today (newspaper), Jan. 13, 1903, p.1.

[11]William Lyman Johnson, The History of the Christian Science Movement, Vol. II  (Brookline, MA: Zion Research Foundation, 1926), pp. 85-87.

[12]Proceedings in Equity, pp. 88-89.

[13]We Knew Mary Baker Eddy, Third Series (Boston: The Christian Science Publishing Society,1953), p. 87.

[14]Ibid., p. 89.

[15]Private memorandum from Mrs. Knott.

[16]See A Chronological Reference to Mary Baker Eddy's Books (Chestnut Hill, MA: Longyear Museum, 2004), pp. 29 and 67.

[17]Charles S. Braden, Christian Science Today (Dallas:  Southern Methodist University Press,  1958), p. 324. 

[18]The Christian Science Watchman, Vol. 4, No. 5, p.106.  Article written by Mr. John V. Dittemore.  The four-page report was to be deposited in The Mother Church archives (“item no. 209”).

[19]Report of the Committee on General Welfare (New York,1920), p. 21.

[20]Richard Oakes, Comp.,  Mary Baker Eddy's Six Days of Revelation, (Richmond, Surrey, England: Christian Science Research Library,1981), p. 534.

[21]Braden, Christian Science Today, p. 311.

[22]Peel, Mary Baker Eddy, The Years of Authority, p. 252.