Our Literature

We are in receipt of a letter from one of our subscribers asking us to state what books may properly be called Christian Science literature, also to define the status of several books which she names.

While it is possible to answer these questions in a very few words, it seems better to go into the matter in a more general way, because of the very considerable number of books of various kinds which have been issued by Christian Scientists within the past few years, and because of other books issued by persons who are not Christian Scientists, but who have mentioned Christian Science in a commendatory manner. As both these classes of books seem to be on the increase, and as they are being extensively advertised among Christian Scientists, it has become a fair question to ask whether any of these publications can be considered as having the official approval of the denomination, or as speaking for the Cause in an authoritative way. The answer which must be made to this question is that the only publications for which the Christian Science church assumes responsibility are the writings of Rev. Mary Baker G. Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, issued through her own publisher, and the periodicals, pamphlets, etc., issued by The Christian Science Publishing Society. All others must be considered as not being Christian Science literature, and as having no more authority to speak for, or bind, the denomination, or to represent the Cause, than would properly be conceded to a book published by a lay member of the Methodist church, for instance, to bind that denomination, even though the book should set forth the author's views about Methodism, or attempt through fiction to present the doctrines of that faith, in an attractive manner.

This statement must not be misconstrued to mean that we are passing judgment upon these books. It simply means that they are not Christian Science literature in the sense in which that term is used by Christian Scientists.

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"I Can't" and "I Can"
December 3, 1904

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