Our Duty

Duty is a word which has been not only much misunderstood, but also more or less shunned. Because of this misunderstanding its very sound has often served as a deterrent to right action, until to-day the world at large has frequently foregone its use. "Why talk about duty?" it cries. "I choose to do only what I desire, and duty is not in my vocabulary." This mistaken concept has come about largely because men have been deceived into believing that duty is nearly, if not entirely, restrictive in its demands, and that it implies the performance of much that human belief denominates as undesirable. On the contrary, the right understanding of duty, when accepted and utilized, is not only a privilege but a protection against all sorts of difficulties and dilemmas and the open door to glorious possibilities.

In the Manual of The Mother Church (p. 42) our beloved Leader has given all Christian Scientists a By-law which sets forth what their duties are, the necessity of performing them, the desirable effects which follow such performance, and the judgment whereby they are to know whether or not they have in each instance fulfilled their duty. Under the caption, "Alertness to Duty," Mrs. Eddy writes: "It shall be the duty of every member of this Church to defend himself daily against aggressive mental suggestion, and not be made to forget nor to neglect his duty to God, to his Leader, and to mankind. By his works he shall be judged,—and justified or condemned."

Admission to The Mother Church
January 16, 1926

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