Kindly allow me to challenge, as extremely unfair, the...

Free Press Tribune

Kindly allow me to challenge, as extremely unfair, the item in a recent issue of your paper which began as if it were to be a synopsis of the master's report lately filed in the suit brought by John V. Dittemore to contest his dismissal from The Christian Science Board of Directors. The articles in question emanated from Mr. Dittemore himself. He supplied it to newspapers through a press agency, to which he agreed to pay a certain sum for each paper that would publish it. The account in question was most unfair in that, while purporting to state or quote the master's findings as to why the majority of this Board voted to dismiss Mr. Dittemore, it neither stated nor quoted the master's main finding on this subject. The master explicitly assigned as "the controlling motive" a different reason from any which was stated or quoted in the story which you have published. This finding is shown by the following quotation from paragraph 57 of the master's report: "I find that the controlling motive which induced its adoption by the defendants who voted for it was the desire on their part to remove the obstacle presented by the plaintiff's presence on the Board to their attempts to arrange a compromise with the Trustees; though they acted the more readily under said controlling motive by reason of their willingness to disassociate themselves from a colleague with whom they could not agree and whom they did not like."

The account in question was also unfair in that it failed to mention the controversy which The Christian Science Board of Directors had with the late Trustees of The Christian Science Publishing Society, and Mr. Dittemore's participation therein, although the master continually referred to this subject throughout his report, and mentioned it explicitly in his finding as to "the controlling motive" of the Directors who voted for his dismissal. By the way, that controversy became the subject of another suit which has been finally decided in favor of the Directors.

Furthermore, the account in question was also unfair in that it contained nothing about the parts of the master's report which disclosed Mr. Dittemore's attitude toward Mrs. Eddy's plan for her Church. To a certain extent, however, this attitude was disclosed in the final paragraph of the account in question, which was a paragraph of propaganda calculated to produce public sentiment against the form of church government established by Mrs. Eddy. For instance, it included the term, "self-perpetuating Board of Directors," used as a term of condemnation or reproach, although it was Mrs. Eddy herself who established The Christian Science Board of Directors with the obligation to fill its own vacancies. I am glad to observe, however, that you cut this paragraph from the article in question, and did not publish it.

Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.

July 14, 1923

We'd love to hear from you!

Easily submit your testimonies, articles, and poems online.