© 2011-2023 Michelle Boccanfuso Nanouche, CSB. All rights reserved. Pages updated 2 December, 2022.
Healers, regardless of their method of practice, must be so alert that nothing in their thoughts or in the way that they conduct their lives would interfere with the patient’s ability to benefit from their efforts to help. This is as essential to the practice of medicine as it is to the practice of Christian Science.
The discoverer of Christian Science, Mary Baker Eddy, didn’t see her discovery as a system in competition with medical science. She saw it as a fresh start from a better premise – an old/new advancement beyond the finite reasoning from a material viewpoint that man is a strictly physical entity with inherent limitations and unavoidable problems.
That is not to say that she relegated the medical faculty to the category of charlatans, rather, she had great respect for the motives and aspirations of what she called “the higher class of physicians”. She had experienced firsthand what a love for humanity and a desire to relieve suffering could do for mankind. She once wrote, “I should have more faith in an honest drugging-doctor, one who abides by his statements and works upon as high a basis as he understands, healing me, than I could or would have in a smooth-tongued hypocrite or mental malpractitioner.” (Miscellaneous Writings, 19)
She placed a high value on the morality and spirituality of the healer, something she learned through her own medical practice of homeopathy before discovering Christian Science. A woman came into Mrs. Eddy’s homeopathic practice with a case of what was then called dropsy and today would likely be called edema due to congestive heart failure. The woman had been unsuccessfully treated by another homeopath, whose dosage of medicine caused an apparent bad reaction.
Mrs. Eddy took the case and treated according to her understanding of proper dosage, and the woman steadily improved. Mrs. Eddy later discovered that, in fact, her prescription was identical to that of the prior physician – the type and dosage that under his care produced horrible side effects and under her care resulted in marked improvement.
Why were the outcomes different? Later, Mrs. Eddy noted that she was always praying to God to keep her from sin, and to guide her on her cases. We can rightly deduce that the thought and prayers of the physician – that is the morality and spirituality of a healer – is an active ingredient in healing.
In the Christian Science Practice chapter of her textbook on Christian Science, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, Mrs. Eddy wrote, “If the Scientist has enough Christly affection to win his own pardon, … then he is Christian enough to practice scientifically. If hypocrisy, stolidity, inhumanity or vice finds its way into the chambers of disease through the would-be healer, it would , if it were possible, convert into a den of thieves the temple of the Holy Ghost, - the patient’s spiritual power to resuscitate himself.” (p. 365)
Healers have to be so alert that their thought and lives do not project negative influences through the open door of a patient’s thinking and experience. Healers can and should pray daily to be kept from fear, discouragement, fatigue, distraction, vice, in order to give their patients the best possible care.
Psalm 25 in the Common English Bible offers a healer's prayer:
I offer my life to you, Lord. My God, I trust you. Please don’t let me be put to shame!...Make your ways known to me, Lord; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth—teach it to me—because you are the God who saves me. I put my hope in you all day long.
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I have practiced Christian Science professionally in
some form since 1979.
But my journey with
Christian Science started
in a Sunday school
where as a young child
I was taught the Scriptures and some simple basics
of Jesus' method of
scientific Christian healing.
A significant experience
at the age of twelve
opened my eyes to
the great potential
of this practice.
After impaling my foot
on a nail,
I prayed the way I had learned
in Sunday school.
the pain stopped
and healing began.
By the next morning the wound had disappeared completely.
the great potential
of Christian Science,
there would be no