No phase of the Christian Science movement causes greater surprise to the onlooker than the way in which funds are forthcoming for the building of church edifices and other expenses connected with the work, as from the standpoint of ordinary experience it seems very remarkable. There are no subscription lists published, the names of the givers generally being known only to the treasurer; therefore the element of emulation is absent. The intention of spending a sum of money on the purchase of a site and the building of a church edifice is arrived at through the decision of the members of the organization, and the announcement is made that funds will be received for that purpose. No other methods of raising money are suggested or required, and no pressure whatever is brought to bear upon the community.

We read many times in Exodus that the children of Israel were to bring a "willing" offering unto the Lord, that "they came, every one whose heart stirred him up, and every one whom his spirit made willing, and they brought the Lord's offering to the work of the tabernacle." We read also about those who were "wise hearted" and who worked for the tabernacle in various ways. As in those days, so now the building of a Christian Science church edifice calls not only for willingness, but also for wisdom; for true wisdom is love, and without love we can have no church. Every individual member of a Christian Science church feels that he is responsible for his share of the building, and it becomes a privilege and a joy to make the offerings. Week after week and month after month, and if need be year after year, money is poured willingly and cheerfully into the treasury, until every liability is met. In this way it is amazing to find how much has been given without any sense of deprivation on the part of the giver; rather does he find that "the heart grows rich in giving." Solomon said, "There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty."

There is another aspect of the money question with regard to which the wisdom of our Leader has been made very evident. In the building of the original edifice of The Mother Church, when sufficient funds had been subscribed to meet the need, the fund was immediately closed, at Mrs. Eddy's request. There was no inclination to create a fund for which no object was in view. To quote again from Exodus, "So the people were restrained from bringing." It has been said more than once that Christian Science would go the way of all other forms of religions when once the denomination acquired wealth; that endowment endowment would follow, and with that decay would inevitably set in; but if Christian Scientists are faithful to the teachings and example of Mrs. Eddy, such a condition can never occur.

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February 18, 1911

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