Christian Science – Mary Baker Eddy
Studio Portrait of Mary Baker Eddy by W Shaw Warren, circa 1884. Courtesy of The Mary Baker Eddy Library.
Mary Baker Eddy (1821-1910) established and led the church based on the King James Bible and her textbook on spirituality and healing, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, first published in 1875. In doing so, she challenged most conventions of her time on the rights of women to be ordained as ministers, to vote, hold property and have legal rights to their own children. The church she established has branch churches and societies around the world. Mary Baker Eddy ensured the Christian Science movement would continue without her personal leadership by establishing democratically organised memberships with lay Readers of the “dual pastors”, the Bible and the Christian Science textbook. There are numerous accredited biographies of Mary Baker here and in The Mary Baker Eddy Library. But Mary Baker Eddy has the last word on herself:
“Those who look for me in person, or elsewhere than in my writings, lose me instead of find me...”