Some Points on Procedure

The Manual of The Mother Church by Mary Baker Eddy, under Article XX, makes certain provisions for the Sunday School, and on page 127 sets forth the Order of Exercises for the Sunday School. Inasmuch as the Manual requires that branch churches shall be democratic in their government (see Art. XXIII, Sects. 1 and 10), each branch church or society makes its own rules for carrying out the Manual provisions. For this reason, some details of Sunday School procedure differ in different organizations. The hour for conducting the Sunday School, the number of teachers' meetings to be held annually, the rules for appointing teachers and officers, and some other details vary.

It is to be noted that certain items which are included in the Order of Services for the churches are omitted in the Order of Exercises for the Sunday School. Whereas suitable organ or piano music is to precede and follow the church services whenever possible (see Manual, p. 121), these are not included in the Order of Exercises for the Sunday School. In the Sunday School of The Mother Church teachers are expected to arrive early so that they may greet the pupils as they come in, and until the session opens teachers and pupils are free to talk with one another. Many teachers take advantage of this opportunity to learn of the various activities of the children so that they may be better able to help them make practical daily application of the Sunday School lessons.

Also there is no provision in the Order of Exercises for announcements. It is apparent, therefore, that it was not our Leader's intention that announcements be made in the Sunday School, such as the notices which are regularly read in the church services. In the Sunday School of The Mother Church no regular weekly announcements are made. The only notices read are those relating to lectures given by The Mother Church and the yearly notice of the Annual Meeting of The Mother Church. These follow No. 4 in the Order of Exercises. Any special notice that needs to be brought to the attention of teachers or pupils is typed or mimeographed on slips and a slip is placed in each class book. If the notice concerns the pupils, teachers may then present it to their classes in a manner suited to the age of the children. Some branch churches maintain a bulletin board in the Sunday School room for the benefit of teachers, on which are posted notices of lectures given by other Christian Science churches in the vicinity, notices of church business meetings, special collections, and so forth.

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