Reminded of my debt of gratitude to Christian Science by...

Reminded of my debt of gratitude to Christian Science by the recent disaster of the steamship Vestris, I feel prompted to give this testimony of rescue and protection received on a similar occasion in the year 1922 while traveling on the German liner Hammonia, seventy miles off Lisbon, when bound for Mexico. For some time previous to the voyage I had been afflicted with insomnia, which was very troublesome on my travels, as I would doze off at times when I should change trains, causing delay and annoyance; wherefore, I asked a practitioner in Berlin to help me. On the first day of September we left Hamburg. We had perfect weather for eight days, and my healing of insomnia came on the first very stormy night, during which I slept normally. In the influenza epidemic I had been healed withing two weeks of bronchial pneumonia by reading "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" by Mary Baker Eddy; and I had been healed of minor ills by gleanings from the Christian Science Lesson-Sermons and literature. I had also been healed of relapses of pleurisy and a nervous breakdown by the work of a loving practitioner. It was through such proofs that I had taken up the study of Christian Science, and thy convinced me that my work as a trained medical nurse was losing interest for me, in spite of the financial gain it offered.

After the above-mentioned night on shipboard, I was startled by hearing crying in a near-by cabin, and in trying to offer assistance I learned it was because of the danger our boat was in. Life belts were being put on all; and when I observed this, fear tried to overwhelm me. Repeating over and over the twenty-third psalm, I went on deck and saw there the panic of all those assembled. Error seemed to say, What can one thinking rightly avail against so many? Immediately the answer came, "One on God's side is a majority." Thus strengthened, I went to the most terrified passenger and succeeded in convincing her that we could be saved, and gradually the contagion of panic gave place to calm. On being asked how long the boat could hold itself above the water, an officer replied, "Three hours." It was then about nine o'clock in the morning. At once I busied myself by helping where help was needed; yet error would try to frighten me many times, especially after the three hours had passed and no apparent means of rescue were visible. During the whole morning, signals of distress were sent off, but were not received. In this trying situation, I took refuge in the memory of a precious Lesson-Sermon in the Christian Science Quarterly, and the words, "Believe ... and thou shalt be saved," came to me; also the thought, Father Thy will be done—not mine. It came clearly to me that God's will can be only good. Shortly afterward, three ships were sighted, but they did not come very near. They, however, picked up the passengers who, at the first notice of danger, had rushed panic-stricken to the life-boats, some of which capsized. About five o'clock the last of the women were taken off the boat, and in half an hour more all remaining had been removed. In another half hour the boat was seen to sink. That was at six o'clock, six hours later than it was expected to go down. On our return trip to Germany, in a ship that came to our rescue, an old officer, a man of few words, remarked, "I cannot yet understand why the boat kept afloat so long." It makes one truly humble to recall this proof of the ever-presence of omnipotent Love, God, our Father-Mother.

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