Church Membership

[Written Especially for Young People]

Mary Baker Eddy, the beloved Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, mindful of the place children and young people rightfully occupy in this worldwide movement, included Section 3 of Article IV in the Manual of The Mother Church. This By-Law, entitled "Children when Twelve Years Old," sets forth that "children who have arrived at the age of twelve years, who are approved," according to the requirements specified, "may be admitted to membership with The Mother Church."

Boys and girls and youths, endeavoring to demonstrate in their daily lives the power of the Word as revealed by our Leader in Christian Science, will do well to consider the progressive step of membership in The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts, and in due course in one of its branch churches or societies. Young students of the Science of Christianity identified by such church membership may enjoy the privilege of serving the movement in departments not otherwise open to them, participating at the same time in its healing activities. Indeed, the sacred responsibility of promoting this globe-encircling movement rests upon those who are gaining the spiritual understanding of the protection of God and of His creation as taught in Christian Science.

When students conscientiously realize that the time has come to apply for membership in The Mother Church, or a branch church, and all preliminary requirements have been complied with, no argument should lead them to postpone taking the necessary steps. The God-inspired impulse comes to individual consciousness to impel spiritual growth. Indifference or procrastination on this question should not be permitted to cause one to defer making application. Keeping fresh in thought one's debt of gratitude to our Leader and to Christian Science silences any suggestion that would retard legitimate action. When one stands for Principle, the opposition of the carnal mind is unmasked, and does not weigh in the scales of Truth. Interviews to determine readiness for membership should be happy occasions—friendly and helpful visits. The decision to make application for church membership should be the result of consecrated and prayerful communion with the one Father.

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The Good Shepherd
April 13, 1935

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