Thursday, August 21, 2008

Branch Church Autonomy

Christian Science Branch Churches are locally owned, democratically operated, and organized strictly and wholly in accordance with the Church Manual. Christian Science Branch Churches are not Gulags under the control of a Central Committee, populated by a pliable lumpenproletariat which can be tapped periodically for pelf garnered in order to maintain the bread and circuses sponsored by Big Brother.

Branch Churches are also not franchises of The Mother Church which operate under the absentee management and dictates of the Board of Directors in Boston. That Branches have in many, far too many, instances relinquished their duties and responsibilities does not render the requirements of the Church Manual moot.

The Church Manual also prescribes precisely the duties and responsibilities of the Board of Directors of The Mother Church. Nothing in the Church Manual gives it the authorization to exceed or ignore Manual requirements or act in a law-unto-itself manner. The Manual also does not give the Board the right to interpret the Church Manual provisions to suit itself or act as the final arbiter of what a Manual provision means. The Board cannot speak ex cathedra on matters outside its prescribed duties. The Church Manual speaks to and for and protects all loyal Christian Scientists equally.

Christian Science Reading Rooms are also governed by the Church Manual. Branch Church Reading Rooms have been meddled with for years by Boston, sometimes through the unwelcome kibitzing of volunteers who perchance wish to build up brownie points with the Vatican in Boston, sometimes directly, and sometimes with the aid of servile members. Reading Rooms are also not intended to be computer game rooms or hang-outs for young people, as seems to be one idea of those wise ones "thinking outside the box".

State Committees on Publication have also in recent years been preempted by Boston and used more in the breach than in the observance of Manual requirements. They have become shameless shills and sales reps for Boston initiatives and a convenient network of spies to help sniff out any incipient dissatisfaction with what Boston does or wants done. Courageous exceptions are fired. It is also not at all certain that COP's are being appointed in conformity with the unambiguous Manual requirements and procedures. And how did the notion gain unquestioning acceptance that COP's be paid at all, let alone by what amounts to an imposed tax on each one of a State's Branch Church members?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Say it, brother! You are saying things many of us out here have thought for years. Thank you very much. There are loyal students of Christian Science that are going to love this!
God keep blessing your pen...
A voice from New Hampshire