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Back and Forth

a dialogue with readers

From the March 23, 1987 issue of the Christian Science Sentinel

As we said in an earlier issue, we've had many letters about the new-old Sentinel. The excerpts that follow represent something of the spirit of most of the responses. There were also several letters that raised good questions and urged us to make sure that the mission of the Sentinel remained on target. We're encouraged that nearly all of you who have written to us have been pleased with the modest changes. We feel this new format captures something of what the earliest Sentinels had—diversity, warmth, and a broad interest in a variety of topics.

I've been a Sentinel reader now for about two years and I want you to know that the articles, editorials, and testimonies have been, so many times, lifesavers for me. I am grateful for the thought and care which go into each issue.

From my [Christian Science] practice, I know how hungry individuals are for honest religion, for a healing approach that is not mysterious, for genuine love expressed toward them. I felt all these things when I read the Sentinel.

The new format and articles give a feeling of inclusiveness; a sense of embracing others. It surely will attract and comfort those seekers for Truth—and will impel the Christian Scientist to offer it to others freely.

I was so grateful for the beautiful cover, the timeliness and simplicity of the caption "Christian healing today," the new format, the new layout—everything appealing to the awakened desire and hope for something more meaningful than today's materialism.... The arrival of the October 6 Sentinel reinforced the truth that church is alive and well.

Within three hours of receiving the new-type Sentinel I had given it away to my hairdresser; it really deserved to be in circulation quickly, and not just be at my bedside.

Frankly, the Journal has always held more appeal to me, and the Sentinel was not as "on target" for my needs, I felt. The October 6th issue ushers in a new appreciation for this publication in my thinking.

Updating has of course occurred a number of times in the Sentinel 's history, but the important element—the Sentinel's basic purpose—remains the same. The Sentinel will continue to provide the pure healing insights of Christian Science and the shared spiritual experience that readers have always counted on.

The Sentinel's motto—Jesus' command "What I say unto you I say unto all, Watch "—has no less urgency today than in the days when Mrs. Eddy founded the periodical. The Sentinel still reminds us of the need to watch. And it still alerts us to the primary thing: proving in our own lives the power of Christ.

The Editors

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